What you need to know about Cognitive Disorder
Cognitive disorder is a type of mental disorder in which an individual's cognitive abilities like learning and problem-solving get affected adversely. This mental condition ranges from mild to severe including dementia, deletion and amnesia.
A person starts to get stressed out and get anxious about little things in his life due to the cognitive skills getting affected. The person also struggles in making decisions and unable to concentrate on a subject. This condition gets severe by the passage of the time.
- Irritation, anxiety, and depression: Feeling of sadness and being anxious are common symptoms of cognitive disorder. A person feels irritated because his personal issues don’t get resolved even after a lot of sole-efforts.
- Difficulty in concentration: This condition directly affects a person’s ability to focus and concentrate. He finds continuous difficulties in studies and in work as well.
- Instability: In cognitive disorder, a person’s mind keeps wandering and fails to stay calm and collective. There is a major instability not only in the mind but also in the emotions and behaviour of a person.
- Poor listening skills and difficulty in following instructions: A person’s listening skills get affected as well, it also hard for a person to stay confident. The person finds it difficult to remember things like, numbers, names, dates etc.
- Difficulty in reading, writing and comprehension: An individual finds it extremely difficult to understand, read and write. This discourages a person and makes him feel unmotivated and left apart from the environment.
- Extended time to complete a task or test: The person takes more time to complete a task than a person who doesn’t retain the condition.
- Complex decision-making pattern: The decision making process of a person also gets affected as the mind fails to process things faster and accurate.
- Alzheimer's disease: In this condition, an individual may start showing minor signs of forgetfulness in the initial stages. The person might face memory errors but, as the condition progresses, the memory becomes impaired and the person won't get clarity about certain situations.
- Corticobasal degeneration: It is a rare case wherein an individual's areas of the brain shrinks as their nerve cells degenerate or die after some period. This condition causes stiffness, trouble in thinking & speaking and faces issues coordinating. As the condition progresses, they find difficulties in walking or balancing their body.
- Mild cognitive impairment: In this condition, an individual experiences a slight yet noticeable decline in mental abilities. They get distracted easily and their ability to learn or process new information decreases. In the initial stage, the person forgets the ongoing conversation or a planned event. But gradually, these problems affect the overall functioning of daily living.
- Vascular dementia: Many individuals develop vascular dementia because of stroke blocks in the brain arteries. However, it's not necessary as it depends on the stroke's severity or location. In this condition, the person remains in the state of constant confusion and might face problems in concentrating. Their ability to analyze any particular situation decreases, leading to unsteady gait.
There is no test yet for cognitive impairment, but a therapist looks after specific symptoms to clarify the diagnosis process. You will be asked to answer several questions to identify your patterns of change.
Here are some common therapies for cognitive impairment used by therapists to treat the disorder:
- REBT: REBT is a psychotherapeutic approach to help individuals in coping up with emotional and behavioural problems which are caused due to cognitive disorder and disturbances to lead people towards a better mental health.
- Family Therapy: Family therapy can be very helpful in this condition especially for kids, as all the important decisions are taken by the parents on behalf of the kid. A therapist gives important notes, details and even tips to help resolving the issues.
- Music therapy: Music therapy helps a person to relax and increase the ability to focus and concentrate more on the on-going subject.
In severe cases, the doctor might also ask you to go for brain imaging to check the pieces of evidence of brain stroke or neurological damage.
One can try a few tips to reduce the chances of cognitive disorder progressing. Even after the therapy session, one needs to take extra care. Sometimes, one might require taking medication so as to check the underlying health condition, as per the doctor's prescription.
- Making a list of the routine: It gets difficult to remember things on a daily basis in cognitive disorder. Many individuals find problems while making decisions. One can make a calendar and add all the essential details for the day to it.
- Controlling emotions: Through constant stress and anxiety, one might get aggressive very frequently. The reckless behavior of a person can turn into a physical injury. One might start being a bully or may even cause self-harm as it is difficult to control the emotions.
- Set realistic goals: Cognitive disorder is frustrating and stressful too. The best way of overcoming the cognitive disorder is by breaking difficult tasks into smaller chunks.
- Physical activity: Many individuals develop social anxiety because of cognitive impairment. They tend to assume things about society and avoid going out. But when a person becomes socially active, he opens up about his problems and can stay off the risk of developing the disorder. Try doing regular physical activities like walking or exercising etc.
- Seek help: Cognitive disorder builds a sudden transition in life that gets difficult to handle all at once. One requires support at each stage of life and seeking it from a professional will give effective results. One can also consider joining several support groups to talk about the problems freely.