The results of a recent Johns Hopkins study add to the growing evidence that dementia is an even bigger problem than we realize. According to the study, a significant majority of seniors with probable dementia have either not been diagnosed with dementia or are not aware that they have been diagnosed.
The biggest risk factor for having a missed diagnosis? Going to the doctor by themselves. People with probable dementia who go to medical appointments unattended are only half as likely to be diagnosed with dementia as those who see their doctors with a family member or friend. This is particularly true when the dementia is less severe.
Hispanics and those with less than a high school education are especially susceptible to going undiagnosed.
The takeaway: it is important to accompany an elder to their health exams, especially if they belong to one of these vulnerable groups, and are showing some signs of cognitive decline. Having someone who can give information about their cognitive function is critical to the early diagnosis — and early intervention — of dementia.
Are you concerned about dementia in yourself or a loved one? It is important not to delay diagnosis and care. Contact Tower Lodge Care Center, in Wall, NJ, at 732-681-1400 or by clicking here, to get the best information about dementia, Alzheimer’s, and how to handle a diagnosis. Tower Lodge Care Center has a dedicated Memory Care center whose staff can make sure you or your loved one gets the best possible care as soon as possible.