Screening Adults With Intellectual Disability For Dementia 

Screening people with intellectual disabilities for early detection of dementia is a successful method. The results seem to be promising after some trials. The Early Detection Screen for Dementia (EDSD) is essential to determine if a person needs more care regarding their mental health issues. Dementia is a condition where an individual's capability of remembering things reduces. A person with an ID is at a higher risk for dementia. There are other mental health-related issues for which an intellectual disability is responsible. 

How Do You Screen for Intellectual Disability?

An individual's IQ level is the most effective method for screening for intellectual disability. The best part about IQ tests is that anyone can complete them and get a score. If the score lies between 55 and 70, it is the case of intellectual disability. If it is below 55, it might be considered a severe ID.

For children, Intelligence quotient tests work excellently. It is always better to get the test done during the early stages because an intellectual disability gets worse with time. 

There are other methods of screening for the same that are also successful. They are as follows-

  • CAIDS-Q: This type of screening tool involves yes/no questions. The entire test includes all those questions that help recognize the functional skills of a person. The score of the test is transformed into a percentage. From that percentage, it is easier to find if an individual has an intellectual disability or not. 

One excellent thing about this screening method is that doctors get quick and credible results. There is no need to put much effort into finding the problem after this test. A low percentage is a sign of an intellectual disability. 

  • WISC-IV: Another screening method that many health professionals use is WISC-IV. The assessment includes questions that help determine the scores of reasoning, working memory, processing speed, verbal comprehension, and IQ. These scores can give a detailed description of a person's condition.
  • ABAS II/III: This assessment is done to evaluate adaptive skills. As you know, a person with an intellectual disability lacks the same. There are three domains of adaptive functioning- conceptual, social, and practical. This test is a perfect combination of all these three domains. That is why it is considered a valuable screening procedure for people with intellectual disabilities. Many studies have been done with the help of this procedure. 

What Are The Main Diagnostic Criteria For Intellectual Disability?

The diagnosis of an intellectual disability depends on some criteria. It involved the following things-

  • Intellectual functioning: It refers to the capability of learning, understanding, reasoning, problem-solving, and other related things. The IQ test is the most common method for finding intellectual functioning. If the score is less than 70, there is a high chance that a person has an intellectual disability. 
  • Adaptive behavior: Adaptive behavior consists of skills like communication, memory, independent living, work-related performance, self-direction, self-care, and safety. These are essential for completing everyday tasks. A person with an ID struggles hard because they lack these skills. 
  • Developmental performance: A developmental performance of an individual reveals the capability to perform academically. Some tests and assessments are taken for the same. The end scores will help determine the problem behind a person's lack of academics. 

What Are The Signs Of Intellectual Disability In Adults?

The diagnosis of an intellectual disability can easily be made by carefully looking at the following signs-

  • Unable to remember things 
  • Difficulty in reading and speaking 
  • Unable to understand even simpler things 
  • Hard to solve any problems 
  • Inability to behave appropriately according to their age
  • Slow intellectual development 
  • Unable to complete everyday tasks like dressing up, doing a chore, etc. 
  • Difficulty in expressing emotions or feelings 
  • Unable to interact with other people through communication 
  • Illogical belief systems 

At What Age Can Intellectual Disability Be Diagnosed?

The right time to diagnose an intellectual disability is before a person turns 18. However, it is not mandatory to consider this for someone's checkup. Every individual has a different cause regarding intellectual disability. So, the time of diagnosis depends from person to person.

Intellectual disability can occur at any age. Even unborn babies in the womb get affected by this condition. One must always consider taking help from a health professional to know the best options. 


People with intellectual disabilities go through many mental health problems like dementia. An early diagnosis is always better for managing the issue without any difficulties. If anybody is having any symptoms of an intellectual disability, you should take action as soon as possible.