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9.4a. Explain why early detection of mental health needs, dementia or learning disability is important

Early detection of mental health needs is important as it can benefit both the individual and their family and friends. It can enable them to put steps in place to to maximise their quality of life regardless of any developing conditions. If the individual and their family know ahead of time, they can plan for the future while the individual is most able to be involved and make decisions.

It can also clear up any uncertainty the individual has and make them feel more in control. By accessing information at an early stage they can make the best use of what is available and identify any financial support. While it may be difficult to hear about their diagnosis, it is better for them to hear about it sooner rather than later so they are more prepared to deal with it.

Finally, it can help them identify possible treatments and therapies that could benefit them and make the developing condition easier to deal with. An individual may want to consider taking medication or going to counselling for example. Therefore, it is vital that any mental health needs or other conditions are detected as soon as possible.