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Old 03-09-2017, 08:17 AM
 
72 posts, read 57,202 times
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I know LOTS of people in who are losing their mental abilities in their 50s and 60s. The David Cassidy story of how someone only 66 years old can being fighting Dementia really hit home.

I am only 62 and I am not nearly as sharp as I was just a few years ago. Many people I know are showing signs of dementia at an early age.

The experts though tell everyone to keep working until they are 70 and wait until then to collect Social Security.

Some of us may be living longer but are we in great shape mentally?
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Old 03-09-2017, 08:20 AM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
33,896 posts, read 42,133,814 times
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A few, usually due to long time drug or, more typically, alcohol use.


You and I are the same age and I find I can't concentrate as well as I used to without effort. Having said that I have always been easily bored and multi-tasked before it had a name.


Forgetfulness is not dementia.
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Old 03-09-2017, 08:39 AM
 
Location: Albuquerque
1,709 posts, read 2,583,430 times
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I find it harder to "get into" reading long books.
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Old 03-09-2017, 09:03 AM
 
Location: SoCal
13,229 posts, read 6,335,450 times
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Most likely. I have problem learning my piano notes. Maybe I should put more effort. I found out why my kid didn't like piano. She's inherited that gene from me.
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Old 03-09-2017, 09:04 AM
 
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I noticed during my working days at 62 that I was no longer the sharp person I had been the rest of my working career so I retired at the top of my game. It was a matter of personal pride. I knew I was slipping although I doubt my co workers and supervisors noticed and it was relatively minor. just age, not dementia.

That doesn't make it bad. I just am scaled back and have loved every minute of my retirement.

Losing your edge is nothing to worry about and doesn't mean that you aren't still sharp as a tack and healthy to boot.
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Old 03-09-2017, 09:05 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
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Personally, no. I know lots of people in their 50s and 60s who have made various personal/financial blunders, but those weren't caused by cognitive impairment.
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Old 03-09-2017, 09:18 AM
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
56,085 posts, read 54,581,442 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by North Beach Person View Post
A few, usually due to long time drug or, more typically, alcohol use.


You and I are the same age and I find I can't concentrate as well as I used to without effort. Having said that I have always been easily bored and multi-tasked before it had a name.


Forgetfulness is not dementia.
That's correct. A good description I once heard is that dementia is not forgetting where you put the keys. It is forgetting what keys do.

I notice at 58 that I don't "retrieve" information out of the deeper recesses of my brain as quickly as I used to. It's still in there, but sometimes when I am trying to recall something, it takes a while longer for it to come forward than it used to.

And yes, I was always kind of "fractured" in my ability to concentrate on one thing at a time, and then I was praised for being such a great multi-tasker at work. LOL.

To answer the OP, I've known a few. My former SIL began having memory problems at 51 or 52. Within a year, she could no longer hold her job--and she knew it, which was sad. I remember her telling me on the phone, "The people at work are very kind and keep pretending I'm normal, but I'm not." She is now 70, doesn't know her own son or remember her siblings.

The other was a woman I worked with who sort of disappeared one day. She was in her mid-fifties, and it turned out she had something called sudden-onset dementia. I do suspect it had been coming on a lot longer than they think, though. Looking back, a friend of hers noticed that she kept forgetting her words, and the same friend was confused when the woman kept sending emails insisting they meet for lunch when she knew the friend was living abroad.

A lot of people, including me, didn't like her much because she would blurt out obnoxious remarks about people's physical flaws in the office, but we just thought she was a biotch. Now I wonder if it was her illness. Her long-time S.O. left her, and she got her own apartment, and then her neighbors began calling the police because she was banging on their doors in the middle of the night accusing them of stealing things. Her only relative was a sister in another state, and law enforcement contacted her and she was diagnosed and lives in a facility now. I think she's just about 60.
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Old 03-09-2017, 09:33 AM
 
Location: Delaware
238 posts, read 154,100 times
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I try to keep mentally active, reading, playing the piano, puzzles, learning new games (like pinochle) and writing. I can say that I'm not as good at remembering the names of new people I meet as I used to be. Now, I jot new names down. My mind is much sharper in the morning than it is later on in the day. Just a few observations.
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Old 03-09-2017, 09:55 AM
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
56,085 posts, read 54,581,442 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suzsilk View Post
I try to keep mentally active, reading, playing the piano, puzzles, learning new games (like pinochle) and writing. I can say that I'm not as good at remembering the names of new people I meet as I used to be. Now, I jot new names down. My mind is much sharper in the morning than it is later on in the day. Just a few observations.
I think you're on the right track. My mom is 88. She had a quad bypass 18 months ago, and around the same time her kidneys failed. She recovered from the surgery better than expected, and now drives herself to dialysis three times a week. She does crossword puzzles and jigsaw puzzles and reads, reads, reads, which she never had enough time for when she was younger. She believes those activities will keep her mind sharp.

Two weeks ago, I went to visit her on a Sunday. We played four games of Scrabble, a game at which I excel--and she beat me two of the games and was the only one to use all seven of her letters.
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Old 03-09-2017, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,888 posts, read 25,327,549 times
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My father probably had the beginnings of dementia in his 50's. He covered it well and it became noticeable to the family about when he turned 60. He wasn't a drinker or a drug user and he lived a solid middle-class life. He was a runner and loved fishing and hunting too.

I physically resemble him and I will admit I worry about losing my marble a lot.
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