Do you struggle to remember names? Do you forget where you are going or what you wanted to do? Is it difficult for you to complete basic math?
When multi-tasking, juggling work, home, and family, or exhausted from a long day, it’s not unusual to forget things. We misplace credit cards and keys, forget to pay a bill, and miss appointments. The more we forget, the more we might ask if we are literally losing our mind.
Fear can prevent us from checking in with a doctor, but if we are showing signs of dementia, (a group of symptoms affecting memory, thinking, and social abilities severe enough to interfere with daily life) doctors can help control the symptoms and help us live more fully. Challenges with memory can happen as early as in our twenties and can be temporary or progressive. There also are several reasons for cognitive impairment. Seeking professional advice from a physician can help sort out why memory is being affected and how to deal with it.
You can begin by taking a little test known as SAGE, Self-Administered Gerocognitive Exam. The test can rule out concerns or detect early signs of cognitive, memory, or thinking impairments. You’ll find four tests from which to choose. They all are similar with slight variations. You only need to take one test.
Download the test here and print it out at home. The average time for completion is 10 to 15 minutes but you can take as much time as you need to complete it. The only requirement is that you do not cheat, such as look at a clock or calendar.
Then bring your completed test to your doctor to score. Questions may be answered in multiple ways, so it’s best to follow up with your doctor who can guide you from there.
For information on Alzheimer’s disease and caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s read The Alzheimer’s Spouse and Navigating Alzheimer’s. The Alzheimer’s Spouse is available from Amazon.com and ACTA Publications.com. Navigating Alzheimer’s is also available from Amazon and ACTA.
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