9 Ways to Know if You’re at Risk for Dementia

9 Ways to Know if You’re at Risk for Dementia

Memory is the fabric of our souls. It houses our joys, our hurts, and all of life’s lessons. It enables us to recall the important events in our lives. Memory also provides us with a sense of purpose that gives our lives meaning.

Our memory is so integral to who we are that it’s easy to take it for granted. But when our memory is damaged, the costs can be high. A deteriorating memory can rob us of our ability to make good decisions and disconnect us from those we love. Memory problems limit our success at work and steal our independence. When memory risk factors like high stress, lack of sleep, and an unhealthy diet aren’t addressed, it can lead to memory loss and symptoms dementia, and even Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia—estimated to account for 60 to 80 percent of cases. However, other forms of dementia also create serious problems. They include:

Vascular dementia – the second most common type of dementia, vascular dementia typically occurs as a result of one or more strokes that have created blockages to the brain’s blood vessels.

Lewy body dementia – refers to both Parkinson’s disease and dementia with Lewy bodies, abnormal protein deposits that disrupt the brain’s normal functioning.

Frontotemporal lobe dementia – is precipitated by progressive nerve cell loss in the frontal or temporal lobes, stemming from various uncommon disorders that cause the affected lobes to atrophy.

Though there are different forms of dementia, many of their symptoms are the same. Here are 9 early warning signs of dementia:

1. Difficulty performing familiar tasks

People can get distracted and sometimes forget an ingredient when they’re cooking. A person with early warning signs of dementia may have trouble remembering all the ingredients and even how to cook their favorite dish.

2. Problems with words and language

People can stumble over words sometimes. That’s natural. But someone with early warning signs of dementia may completely forget an obvious word, use an inappropriate word, and may even be difficult to understand. They may also have trouble understanding you.

3. Disorientation of time and place

Someone with early symptoms of dementia may have trouble remembering how to get to a familiar place or forget where they are.

4. Decreased judgment

Someone with early warning signs of dementia may start neglecting their hygiene and grooming. He or she may have used to style their hair, and now you rarely see them put together, not even for special occasions.

5. Gradual memory loss

It’s normal to occasionally forget an appointment. But someone with early warning signs of dementia will completely forget appointments more often than normal and totally forget what they are for.

6. Misplacing things

Everyone misplaces their keys and phone sometimes. A person with early warning signs of dementia may leave them in unusual places and may even become suspicious and accuse someone else of hiding or stealing their things.

7. Problems with abstract thinking

Sometimes people forget to pay a bill. Hopefully, that’s a rare occurrence. A person with early warning signs of dementia may have difficulty handling money, paying bills, and even understanding what the numbers mean.

8. Personality changes

Everyone can be moody at times. A person with early warning signs of dementia may have more intense mood swings, more often.

9. Loss of initiative, apathy

It’s natural for people to sometimes not want to be social. A person with early warning signs of dementia may lose interest in social activities and hobbies. They may become more isolated and withdrawn.

Have you noticed any of the above warning signs in yourself or a loved one?

To get a better idea of how healthy your memory is, try taking a memory assessment.

Did you know that in spite of the natural aging process, you actually have a choice in how fast your brain ages? Your behavior and habits can speed up or slow down the rate at which your brain declines with age. Being mentally and physically active, eating nutritious foods and avoiding unhealthy habits can help you maintain optimal brain health and ward off dementia.

The best way to sharpen recall, reduce brain atrophy, and eliminate all of the risk factors that steal the mind is with a BRIGHT MINDS approach, which addresses memory problems, aging and Alzheimer’s disease.

To learn more about Amen Clinics Memory Program based on Dr. Amen’s BRIGHT MINDS approach, check it out HERE. To schedule a visit with our clinic, please call 888-288-9834 or tell us more online.


  1. I m amazed to see what u do ,would like to get readings both for my self and my sister …. please give my ideas how much this will cost? Also I whant to know if we can do the scan here where we live and bring for diagnoses? And treatments?
    If so please can u tell me what I need to know before asking my doctor for what exsakly scan I ask for ?
    -Can we see if there is toxity and parasite in this scans?
    -I dont realy see much info regarding your after care treatment plans?
    – Do u give the medicasions and suppliments there ? How much we can exapect it will cost ? U have IV suppliments ? Or people simply come there for scaning ?
    Do u have any center with residental opsions? As
    I have a very lost minded sister with diagnoses of delutsional paranoia , ADD, and I see signs of bipolar and scitso, seems she have it all , she is realy lost in her delutsions and she live in hell everyday …
    She is not responding to medicasions and the mental hospital tells us they cant do anything to help her , as yes no medicatsion no help ..how bad is that !!! We are lost how we can help her to stop this craziness in her mind
    She is spiritual being with big beautiful heart ..she loves anything to do with organic herbs and plants and she dose take care of her food and is constantly trying to get better …. so do u feel u can help her in anyway?
    Thanks for your work !!!!

    Comment by Inga dora Ellertsdottir — December 29, 2017 @ 6:22 AM

  2. 1,2,3,5, and 6, I had from toxic mold exposure – age 53. I also had other physical symptoms.
    Numb hands and feet, numb lips, pain in certain organs, and more. Make sure you are not part of 25% of population that can’t easily process mold. Read this article: http://paradigmchange.me/wp/fire/ After doing major remediation to my house and slowly detoxing my body, I’m a million times better. That said, my mom was diagnoised with Lewy Body, but she also lived in a very moldy building. Unfortunately, I never had her HLARQ checked. Good health to all.

    Comment by Sandy — December 30, 2017 @ 7:42 AM

  3. I have every symptom and am age 55. I never took hormones after going into Menopause at age 45. My doctors then diagnosed ADHD. We tried hormones for a month then started on Adderall. My symptoms were dangerous. I could not hold focus at all. I lost things all day long. The meds helped but I took no hormones and still haven’t taken hormones after ten years now. Now that I am complaining that I have serious symptoms and using wrong words and losing things and forgetting many appointments even if I remember them earlier in the day. I use a ton of alarms and reminders and sticky notes and a dry erase board. I always miss turns while driving and I cannot pay bills on time or make good judgement on what I am purchasing and my priorities are mixed up. I have slowed down in caring about taking all the extra time it takes to get ready to go someplace. My routine has become so time-consuming that I have just thrown my hair into a ponytail and skip the makeup. I never used to do this. I went to the neurologist very concerned. He did an EEG while I was on my Adderall but he said no caffeine…confusing anyway that was normal. He said I just need hormones and said I do not have early Alzheimers even though my mother just died from it. She was pretty old at 90 though. I am still very scared as my college-age kids are having to remind me where to turn when I drive as I always miss my turns. I get distracted or my mind just gets on something else. I feel tired a lot. I never used to. I always had a ton of energy. I have sleep Apnea and haven’t been using my machine. I am a migraine sufferer too. but no migraines since menopause. I always used to have the aura of lights with a migraine or before it. So my doc wants me to start hormones but this late in the game my GYN says it is risky to my cardio health. I am a bit overweight but otherwise healthy. Cholesterol is slightly high but not horrible. Do I start hormones or get treated for early Alzheimers. Do I get a second opinion? I am really suffering here but sisters who don’t see me but two or three times a year say oh you are fine your mind is fine but my kids know better they have seen the wrong words and the forgetfulness. I have had some depression too in the past but am generally a positive hard working person with a lot of things I like to do. I have always been a walker and in past jogged and lifted weights and played golf. Is it stress or Alzheimers? Just went through a horrible divorce and also have a son with severe ADHD and mood disorder and it has been very stressful. Lost my home and my job to care for him. No one thinks it is Alzheimer’s but I have every symptom and have had memory problems all my life only now way worse!

    Comment by jc — February 3, 2018 @ 6:20 AM

  4. Hello jc, thank you for reaching out. We have an extensive program for memory related issues and symptoms. You can find out more here – https://amenclinics.com/memory-rescue-program/. We also have an extensive integrative medicine program that includes labs and panels to address symptoms related to hormone levels and changes. To determine the root cause of the symptoms you have described, perhaps a consultation with an integrative medicine specialist will be a helpful first step. To inquire about this consultation, please call 888-288-9834.

    Comment by Amen Clinics — February 5, 2018 @ 10:01 AM

  5. Does the Amen Clinic provide services in addition to brain Imaging?

    Comment by Colmon Holmes — March 21, 2018 @ 11:28 PM

  6. Hello Colmon, yes Amen Clinics provides an array of services beyond brain SPECT imaging. To review our treatment options you can visit this page – https://amenclinics.com/treatments/, or call our Care Coordinators at 888-288-9834. Thank you for reaching out!

    Comment by Amen Clinics — March 22, 2018 @ 7:44 AM

  7. JC – I have had the same symptoms at 68 after going thru many of the life stresses that you have gone through. First, I think it’s perfectly normal, particularly after menopause, going thru life’s hard times, to have stress and sleeplessness and that awful “should I have done this or that differently.”.

    I am fully in favor of getting professional help. They help a lot, I do think walking every day helps calm your mind if you concentrate on the nature around you and not dwell on your problems. It is also very freeing to write the problems down and put them in piles “I can’t solve this”, “I can only learn to handle my stress” I am not responsible for everything that goes wrong in my family.” “I am a good person and deserve to be happy.” “I did my best.” “I will keep busy and in contact with my community and my friends.” “Not everything is my fault.”

    Try it. It takes some time but just keep repeating these and go on with a busy, productive and useful life . Things don’t always work out as we wish they would but we must learn from our mistakes and move on to do better. You may never solve other’s problems and you can never do that until you solve your own. Don’t give up. I’m 74 and done with the menopause horror which truly does make you feel insane but the end of it is worth it. You feel crazy but you aren’t , you are just responding normally to the changes in your life. Talk to your doctor but also try taking time for yourself. Watch your favorite program, go for a walk, meet up with a friend, learn a new skill, maybe get in contact with a an old neighbor or friend who is going through what you are going through. There is help everywhere. Stop when you are being manic…cleaning too much, doing anything too much. Take a nap preferable with a pet. You’ll both be happier. And if you have a mother who is still alive, mine is 97, spend some time talking to her about your feelings and I think you’ve find a compassionate and helpful ear.

    Comment by Victoria McIntyre — August 5, 2018 @ 10:52 PM

  8. My father has frontal lobe dementia and can not do much in his own. He has been in a home and hospice comes in pence every couple of weeks. Is there any way he can get help or is he to far?

    Comment by Julie — January 22, 2019 @ 2:05 PM

  9. These symptoms look very much like depression. How can you tell the difference between early onset and depression?

    Comment by Heather — March 4, 2019 @ 5:11 AM

  10. What can I do, for Benign Essential Tremors? They are effecting my life.

    Comment by Deanna Carroll — March 4, 2019 @ 5:27 AM

  11. Can I be copied on Sandys reply?
    It would be very helpful when setting up an appointment.

    Thank you

    Comment by Michael King — March 4, 2019 @ 6:56 AM

  12. Do you accept Medicare?

    Comment by Jessie Davis — March 5, 2019 @ 7:57 PM

  13. Thanks for the info
    I would like information on the tests etc

    Comment by Patricia Miller — March 16, 2019 @ 7:08 AM

  14. Hello Patricia, thank you for reaching out. We will have a Care Coordinator reach out to you.

    Comment by Amen Clinics — March 20, 2019 @ 7:25 AM

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a comment

Contact Us