What Personality Changes Are Normal for Seniors?

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Changes in a senior’s behavior are not always indicative of dementia or other serious conditions. In fact, there are a number of marked differences family caregivers in Caledon can expect to see in their aging loved ones’ personalities as time goes by. To ensure your loved one remains healthy and happy, make sure you know which changes are normal and which may require attention.

Forgetfulness

Everyone has a hard time calling specific words to mind or remembering where they’ve put their car keys from time to time. Occasional forgetfulness is simply a fact of life and it’s likely to increase with age. However, forgetting things may signify a problem if your loved one is no longer able to remember where he or she is going or how to get home, or if he or she cannot recognize close relatives and friends.

Suspicion

One of the common signs of Alzheimer’s disease is suspicion. Seniors who have this illness often misplace their own items and then accuse others of stealing them. This is largely related to their increasing sense of disconnection. However, aging adults who do not have Alzheimer’s can still become fiercely protective of their personal space and belongings. Getting older can bring on feelings of vulnerability, and many seniors are afraid of having to leave their comfortable and familiar environments. Talking with your loved one about his or her feelings and offering words of assurance can alleviate fears concerning personal independence, preferred living arrangements, and the need for home care in Caledon. It’s vital to note that, although you might think you know what’s best for your loved one, you should let him or her make decisions as long as he or she maintains the cognitive abilities to do so.

Depression

Emotions like anxiety and depression are not uncommon at this stage of life. While most people hope to have everything figured out by the time they reach their golden years, this is actually a time that can be fraught with a number of new and overwhelming challenges. Living on a fixed income, experiencing marked changes in vision, mobility, and overall health, and experiencing the loss of close friends can be both mentally and emotionally taxing. However, if your loved one is consistently depressed, this could be a sign he or she is spending too much time in isolation. You should regularly check on your loved one to ensure he or she is maintaining a balanced and active social life.

Agitation

Seniors who were once known for having incredible patience may become easily agitated or short-tempered. Even with good health, seniors are prone to experiencing changes in cognitive functioning. They can also develop a number of persistent physical aches and pains. These changes can make it difficult to keep up with fast-paced conversations or to remain comfortable for long periods in crowded rooms with a lot of noise and distractions. Check on your loved one when he or she becomes agitated to ensure he or she has adequate plans for managing physical and mental discomfort. It is also important to schedule doctor visits whenever behavioral changes are radical and indicate a waning ability to practice good self-care.

If you are concerned about your loved one’s mental and emotional wellbeing, reach out to Home Care Assistance. Our hourly and live-in caregivers make wonderful companions and can provide the support and stimulation your loved one needs and deserves. We also offer specialized Parkinson’s, stroke, and Alzheimer’s care in Caledon. For more information and to schedule a no-obligation consultation, call one of our Care Managers today at 905-951-8885.