When is forgetfulness dementia? Questions for Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month

PET scan results that are part of a study on Alzheimer's disease.
R. Scott Turner, professor of neurology and director of the Memory Disorder Center at Georgetown University Hospital, points to PET scan results that are part of a study on Alzheimer's disease at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington in May 2015.
Evan Vucci | AP 2015

The Alzheimer's Association is pushing earlier screening this Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month. So, what should you look for?

"I think it's almost universal that we forgot where we put the keys, we forgot someone's name. That just happens all the time. If you have a precedence for those things, that's not Alzheimer's," Dr. Jon Hallberg told MPR News host Tom Crann. "But if you take those things, plus you don't remember what you said two minutes ago and someone says, 'You just told me that,' you're driving and you don't know where you are, you forget what things are used for, then some form of dementia might be happening."

Hallberg, medical director of the University of Minnesota Physicians Mill City Clinic, said that's when you should see a doctor.

For more on early detection and how doctors evaluate patients for dementia, click play on the audio player above.

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