Elderly people in Illinois who are facing the early stages of dementia may need intervention from family members to make major decisions. According to the Mayo Clinic, not all forms of dementia are permanent, but progressive dementia, such as Alzheimer’s, typically increases in severity until it obliterates virtually all of a person’s memory. In these cases, family members may need to establish a guardianship in order to make decisions on their loved one’s behalf when he or she is no longer able to do so independently. However, in order to be adequately prepared, those family members should know the warning signs of this condition.

Healthline states that the earliest signs of dementia include minor memory loss. This could manifest itself by the inability to retain simple instructions, or forgetting well-known directions and common words. Since short term memory is often the target of early dementia, the victim may remember facts from years ago, but be unable to recall events that occurred only hours before.

Dementia sometimes triggers a change in personality or demeanor. Sudden memory loss can be disconcerting, and it can cause anxiety or even anger. Someone suffering from dementia may experience inexplicable mood swings and irritability. It could inhibit social restraint, resulting in rudeness or inappropriate behavior. The confusion from memory loss often takes a tremendous emotional toll on its victims. It may even result in a feeling of hopelessness and depression. If these behaviors increase in frequency and severity, it may be time to make arrangements for the elderly person’s future care.