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What Visual-Spatial Problems Are Caused by Dementia?

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Visual-spatial skills are necessary for processing information when solving problems and completing routine tasks. Visual-spatial processing enables individuals to make judgments in many situations. For example, when reading a map, a person must be able to navigate from a starting point based on the information provided on the map. Once the individual determines the location, he or she can decide where to go next. Visual-spatial processing issues in seniors with dementia can put them at risk of becoming disoriented or make them susceptible to injuries associated with limited decision-making skills.

Navigating the Community

Dementia can cause visual-spatial issues that interfere with mobility and other routine activities. Getting lost is an example of how visual-spatial problems can impact independence in those with dementia. An individual may have found it easy to navigate his or her community in the past. However, visual-spatial problems associated with dementia can make it challenging to recognize places that were once familiar. When walking or driving, an individual may not recognize streets and landmarks. A senior with visual-spatial issues may have difficulty judging distances or determining when it’s safe to cross a street. It’s not unusual for persons with dementia to get lost or wander because they cannot decide how to get to their desired destinations.

If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elderly home care Colorado Springs, CO, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

Recognizing Familiar Faces and Objects

Visual-spatial issues can interfere with the ability to recognize faces. A senior with dementia may look into a mirror and not know his or her face, or he or she may have difficulty identifying family members and close friends. Everyday objects may look strange. When looking at a toilet, an individual might see it as a big white container of water. Patterns in carpets or on floors can appear as objects that need to be stepped over or around. Large dark spots on floors can be intimidating because they may appear as holes to be avoided. Shiny floors may look wet and cause a person with dementia to be afraid of slipping and falling.

Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.

Eating

Visual-spatial difficulties can cause seniors with dementia to have issues with healthy eating. Food may be difficult to recognize or even appear scary because of how it’s prepared and presented. If the food color blends with the plate color, it can make the food difficult to see and retrieve with a utensil. Picking up a glass and bringing it to the mouth might be difficult because of the inability to judge distance. A clear glass containing water may appear empty. Families and caregivers who don’t associate poor eating with visual-spatial problems may attribute their loved one’s behavior to poor appetite, which can lead to malnutrition and susceptibility to other illnesses.

Even when families have the best intentions, caring for a senior loved one with dementia can be challenging. Fortunately, Home Care Assistance is here to help. We are a leading provider of dementia care. Colorado Springs families can take advantage of our flexible and customizable care plans, and our caregivers always stay up to date on the latest developments in senior care. Home Care Assistance can be your trusted partner in caregiving for your aging loved one. Contact one of our experienced Care Managers today at (719) 822-1229 to learn more about our reliable in-home dementia care services.