Four Early Signs of Dementia You Can Spot While Walking

The most noticeable symptom of dementia is memory loss, but there are also more subtle symptoms to watch out for.

People are warned of four first signs that can be observed during a walk. It is often one of the first symptoms of the disease.

Dementia is currently incurable, but early detection can slow the progression of some cases, allowing people to retain their cognitive abilities for longer, the NHS explains. The health service advises: “A diagnosis helps people with dementia get the right treatment and support. It can also help them and those around them prepare for the future.”

More than 900,000 Britons suffer from dementia. Normal memory loss due to stress and fatigue is common. But if you are forgetting more and more, a visit to the doctor may be the best option.

Researchers have also noted early warning signs that are visible even while walking, as navigating on foot requires a lot of mental effort.

Spatial awareness may decline as dementia alters a person’s perception of the environment, claims Prof Gill Livingston. She noted: “People with early-stage Alzheimer’s may struggle to make sense of objects, so they see things as 3D when they’re not, or even 2D when they’re actually 3D.

“It means they see objects that aren’t there, forcing them to walk in a different direction as they try to avoid them. Or it means they might trip over things they think are flat. Plus, they can’t remember things they’ve seen before, so it can be hard to get back to places.”

As cognitive abilities decline, people tend to move more slowly, which is reflected in their reduced walking pace. Dementia can alter arm swing as balance problems develop, causing people to use their arms for stability, while shorter steps, another sign of dementia, can result from a lack of confidence.

Visit our homepage for the latest local news and developments in Irish America here.

Leave a Comment