In our ongoing mission to champion brain health education, The Kensington Falls Church is excited to announce our latest event: “My Loved One Has Been Diagnosed with Mild Cognitive Impairment … Now What?”
This illuminating in-person workshop demystifies the complexities surrounding a mild cognitive impairment diagnosis and charts a clear path forward for those affected by this condition.
We’re honored to collaborate with Melissa Long, the Director of Education and Support at the Insight Memory Care Center in Fairfax, Virginia.
With her years of expertise, Melissa will provide attendees with invaluable insights and practical strategies for dealing with MCI.
If an MCI diagnosis has touched your life or that of a loved one, this is an opportunity you cannot miss—RSVP today for this in-person event on Sept. 7.
Keep reading to learn how to take decisive steps toward informed and proactive care.
Mild cognitive impairment, also known as MCI, is a condition that’s characterized by noticeable cognitive decline that’s more advanced than what should be expected for an individual’s age, but not severe enough to affect their daily life.
MCI sits somewhere between the normal cognitive decline of aging, and the more serious decline of dementia or Alzheimer’s, which is why it could be seen as a bridge to developing dementia.
Imagine this scenario: You’ve begun to notice that your mother now often forgets the names of her grandchildren or misplaces her keys or purse more frequently than before.
She might pause mid-sentence more often, struggling to find the correct words, and showing unusual behaviors that she never did before.
These observations should prompt a visit to a neurologist, who after a series of tests, may diagnose your mother with MCI. This news might be worrying, but understanding the signs and symptoms is the first step toward managing the condition.
Common symptoms of mild cognitive impairment can include:
- Gradual memory loss
- Struggling to find the right words
- Repeating questions or stories frequently
- Unusual behaviors, such as impulsivity, irritability, or apathy
- Worsening medical conditions
It’s important to know that MCI doesn’t necessarily mean your loved one will develop dementia or Alzheimer’s. Some people with MCI can remain stable for years, or even have their symptoms reverse.
However, an MCI diagnosis does increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s or dementia in the future, which is why regular check-ups and proactive management can help monitor the condition before it progresses.
At our event, Melissa Long, a seasoned expert in the field of brain and memory health, will present insight to caregivers and their loved ones dealing with an MCI diagnosis.
Drawing from her extensive experience at Insight Memory Care Center, Melissa will emphasize the importance of proactive measures and early interventions.
Preview a breakdown of top recommendations for navigating MCI below.
Keep a close eye on your loved one’s MCI symptoms, as the onset of this condition is gradual. Some days may be better than others, which is why keeping a record is important.
Try to stay observant and note any unusual behaviors, and set reminders for your loved one to help them keep track of their daily tasks or medication schedules.
You, the caregiver, and your loved one should consider keeping separate daily journals to track cognitive challenges and serve as a memory aid.
Use your journal to note down questions or concerns before visiting a healthcare professional so you don’t forget any details.
Consistent medical check-ups are required to monitor the progression of MCI. Schedule regular consultations with a neurologist or primary care physician and adjust care plans based on the condition’s progression.
After receiving the MCI diagnosis, create a routine and care plan for your loved one’s specific needs. Consistency can be comforting, so establish a predictable daily routine to reduce confusion and anxiety.
At this point, consider cleaning up your loved one’s home to add proper lighting, minimize tripping hazards, and introduce assistive devices such as handrails or AI assistants.
Stimulating the brain through analog games can help slow down the progression of MCI. Try games such as sudoku, card games, or crossword puzzles to activate the brain.
Also engage in regular exercises, such as walking, or participating in social groups or community events to stimulate their mind.
Communicate the diagnosis with all your family members so they’re on the same page and regularly communicate with each other about any changes or concerns to your loved one’s condition.
Now is the time to familiarize yourself with long-term care communities, such as assisted living and memory care communities, should the need arise for your loved one to receive more supervised, round-the-clock care.
Joining MCI or dementia support groups can offer insights and emotional backing.
Consider visiting Kensington Konnect, our online hub for caregivers and their families that offers resources, advice, and more to support families of those with MCI and other conditions.
Educate yourself about the potential outcomes of MCI, such as developing into dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, and prepare yourself for future challenges.
Guided by Our Promise to love and care for your family as we do our own, we stand unwavering in our commitment to elevate the quality of life for your loved ones.
Our life enrichment programs foster a vibrant community ambiance, while our specialized memory care communities—Connections and Haven—offer Alzheimer’s care and dementia care for people in the early to advanced stages of memory loss.
Stay updated and participate in our holistic approach to care by joining educational events such as our upcoming Sept. 7 in-person event, “My Loved One Has Been Diagnosed with MCI … Now What?”.
If your family is affected by MCI, contact The Kensington Falls Church today to seek support from experts who understand what you’re going through the most.