ZocdocAnswersWho needs neurological therapy?

Question

Who needs neurological therapy?

I've been mixing up words lately. I am 66 and think I may need therapy. I just don't see how this could be a normal aging thing.

Answer

Mixing words up can be a sign of many different things that could be going on. Depending on how severe your word finding problem is, you could be said to have aphasia. Aphasia is a generic term used to describe problems with speech. Many unrelated issues can cause word finding difficulties. For example, depression in older folks can manifest as word finding difficulties. Early dementia can result in this sign as well. If the problem occurred suddenly, a stroke would be suspected. The list of other possibilities is long, and thus, I think you should be evaluated sooner than later. I suggest that you schedule an appointment with a neurologist. He or she can take a detailed history of your symptoms and preform a thorough neurological exam. If anything is found on the neurological exam, then you will likely need to have some head imaging performed (such as an MRI or CT scan). The neurologist will also likely administer a cognitive test to rule out early difficulties with thinking that can occur with dementia. If anything is found, then treatment may be started. The treatment can be anything from a medication to speech therapy. This will depend on the severity of your word finding problem and the suspected cause. Good luck.

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