Dr. Alexander Salerno, the lead physician of Salerno Medical Associates, has dedicated much of his career to providing elderly individuals with integrated care. With his experience assisting the elderly, Dr. Alexander Salerno also founded the Community Health Outreach Program—formerly known as the Senior Health Outreach Program—which offers mental health care and other medical services to the elderly.
Although the occasional memory lapse can frustrate and even worry the older adult, such events are not typically cause for concern. Even if an individual forgets the name of an acquaintance or the purpose of an errand, he or she is likely to retain the ability to function as normal and to make rational decisions. For some elders, however, memory loss becomes intrusive enough that daily functioning and quality of life suffers.
Older individuals with serious memory loss may forget how to perform simple, daily self-care tasks, such as bathing or dressing. They may become lost in places they know well, lose the ability to follow directions, or repeat a question having just heard the answer. Planning and problem-solving skills may suffer, even in familiar situations, and orientation to time and place may decrease. Individuals with such issues may wish to consult a qualified physician, who can assess the likelihood of Alzheimer’s and similar conditions.