MCI is characterized as the deterioration of memory, cognitive ability, and attention that is beyond what’s considered normal base do to age and overall health. While it doesn’t significantly interfere with the normal activities of the elderly, it may increase the risk of dementia caused by Alzheimer’s or other neurological conditions. But in most cases, it does not progress into that stage.
When MCI occurs, seldom do people realize its presence because of its less-obvious and often overlapping symptoms with that of early stages of dementia. This makes its presence or diagnosis a little difficult until family members start noticing frequent changes in the elderly’s activities. Globally, an estimated 6% of people aged 60 have MCI. However, as they reach 85, the number rises to 37%.
What are the Signs of MCI?
The first step towards treating MCI is its diagnosis, which requires the help of a memory clinic, neurologist, or neuropsychologist. What’s important to know is that its diagnosis does not necessarily mean that you will have dementia in the later stages, though 50% of confirmed MCI diagnoses turn into dementia. The common signs of MCI may include:
● Misplacing things frequently
● Forgetting to attend appointments or events
● Facing problems with coming up with words than other people of similar age.
● Losing a chain of thoughts or a thread of conversations
● Poor judgment
Few Tips to Manage MCI in the Elderly
If you or your senior family member has been diagnosed with MCI, here are a few quick tips to help you manage it:
● Check for treatable causes such as sleep deprivation, poor nutrition, and other health conditions that may impact cognitive abilities
● Learn a new skill to engage more brain cells and jumpstart their activity
● Keep track of things that needs to be done either by placing sticky notes in the most noticeable place or using a smartphone app
● Get help from a live-in caregiver for the elderly person
● Exercise two to three times a week
● Avoid alcohol and cigarettes
Although MCI doesn’t usually interfere with the daily activities of the elderly, it may increase the risk of dementia in later stages, which can reduce the quality of life.
If you or your family member has been facing trouble with running daily errands or meeting other living needs, we can provide you with a compassionate and skilled live-in caregiver for the elderly person to take care of their needs so that they live comfortably and independently in their home.