When I found out my dad’s memory was declining, I thought about asking him to do the clock test. I had stumbled upon it online, and had found out it was commonly used to help diagnose dementia and/or cognitive decline. But before I had the chance, Dad got sick and ended up in the hospital.
Now my mom is the one that is sick, though her issue seems to be more physical than mental. But as she was being assessed for home health care today, they had her do the clock test.
She got most of the numbers right, but they started at about the one o’clock position and trailed around to about seven o’clock. Mom knew it wasn’t right and was disappointed she couldn’t figure out. My mom has always loved puzzles.
It broke my heart to see her struggle over a test an elementary school child could do.
4 responses to “The clock test”
I know, from personal experience, how hard it is to see signs that your parents are not what they once were. But your mother may be suffering from delirium, rather than dementia. Many illnesses can cause a temporary decline in cognitive functioning, that clears up once the root cause is eliminated. One common culprit is urinary tract infections, something that is actually not all that uncommon in older women, particularly.
It turns out Mom had low potassium levels, and her mental status has improved some since treatment.
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