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Several serious medical conditions can cause a mental status change in a seemingly healthy person. The most common type of mental status change is delirium, a condition in which a person becomes confused, disoriented, and possibly agitated. You should seek medical attention for any abrupt change in a person’s mental status.
Call 9-1-1 if you feel there is a threat to the person experiencing mental status change, to yourself, or to others around you.
At Dignity Health, mental status change is treated by board-certified doctors and nurses who deliver high quality and compassionate care. Emergency services are offered at our local, state-of-the-art hospitals. Use InQuicker™, our online waiting service, to select your estimated arrival time to your nearest location for care for mental status change in Arizona.
Although some people immediately think mental status changes are usually caused by intoxication or drug use, this is not necessarily true. Several medical conditions can trigger a mental status change, especially in elderly people. Prompt diagnosis and treatment will often restore normal mental status.
Some possible causes of a mental status change include:
The common signs and symptoms of a mental status change include:
The signs and symptoms of a mental status change can occur gradually over time, or they can appear suddenly.
Treatment and prevention of mental status changes focuses on identifying the cause of the change, treating it to resolve the issue, and then making lifestyle changes to avoid having it happen in the future.
For instance, if a stroke caused the mental status change, your doctor will treat the stroke and its primary symptoms first. Afterwards, you likely will be on a stroke prevention plan that will reduce your risk of having future episodes of a mental status change due to stroke.