To be mentally capable, you must grasp the decision you must make, why you must make it, and the likely result of that decision. Some people will be able to make decisions on certain issues but not on others. For example, someone who has made a will may be able to decide what should happen with their estate but might not have the wisdom or experience to choose an investment manager for their portfolio.
People can also have diminished mental capacity if they suffer from dementia or another cognitive impairment. People who have mental incapacity may not know how much authority they are giving away by signing documents (such as powers of attorney) or may not understand the consequences of doing so. Their interests may not be represented in these documents.
Mental capacity is not the same as legal sanity. Someone who is legally sane can still have impaired mental capacity. A person who is mentally competent can also act under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. The only way to tell for sure whether someone is capable of making decisions about your care is through assessment by professionals who know them well. If you are unsure about someone's ability to make decisions for themselves, it is best to err on the side of caution and avoid making any important decisions for them.
Diminished mental capacity can be caused by many different factors including aging, disease, trauma, etc.
"Mental capacity" refers to the ability to make your own decisions. Someone who lacks capacity due to an illness or disease such as a mental health problem, dementia, or a learning impairment cannot accomplish one or more of the four activities listed below: Understand the facts provided to them concerning a certain decision. Reason and make a choice about what they want to do. Communicate their choice to others. Act on their choice.
In order for someone to be able to make their own choices, they need to have the following three things: Mental ability. This means being able to understand information and use logic to learn new skills or change behaviors. Emotional well-being. This means having control over your emotions by being able to deal with different situations without getting upset or acting out physically. Physical well-being. This means having the ability to carry out daily tasks such as walking, bathing, or using the bathroom.
Someone who lacks any of these three things can't make their own choices. They can still feel pain and react to it if someone hurts them or uses violence against them, but they can't think for themselves. They have to trust those around them to decide what actions to take.
People sometimes say that someone has lost their mental capacity because they no longer know who they are or where they are going in their life. If this happens to you, please call your doctor right away so that you can be put back into a safe and stable environment.
Some decisions, however, can never be made on your behalf by another person, whether or not you lack mental ability. These include marriage or civil partnership decisions, divorce, sexual connections, adoption, and voting. In addition, any decision that would require the use of your financial resources (for example, making a donation to an organization) cannot be made without your consent if you do not have legal representation.
If you find yourself unable to make any of these important decisions, you will need to consider how to proceed. You could try and make the decision for yourself by writing down your choices and seeing which one feels right. Or you could talk with others who know you well and get their opinions. If you are unsure what to do, you should seek advice from a professional.
People differ in how much control they want over their lives and in what areas of their existence they feel capable of making their own decisions. However many people feel able to decide where they live, who visits them, and their finances. They may also have a say in choosing some of their clothes, wearing makeup, using social media, and going out with friends.
It is only natural for those who lack mental ability to feel excluded from this process. Yet although they cannot make all decisions for themselves, most people would agree that those who lack such ability deserve equal treatment under the law.