Alzheimer’s disease is a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior. It is a progressive disease, meaning symptoms usually develop slowly and get worse over time, becoming severe enough to interfere with daily tasks.. The most common form of dementia, between 60 and 80 percent of dementia cases are in fact Alzheimer’s disease.
Forgetfulness can be part of the normal aging process, but if memory loss is disrupting the activities of daily living it may be a symptom of Alzheimer’s. The Alzheimer’s Association has a list of 10 warning signs. If you or a loved one are experiencing these symptoms, please consult a doctor or other caregiver.
- Memory loss that disrupts daily life. Memory loss including forgetting important dates, repeatedly asking the same question and relying on memory aids too often.
- Trouble with problem solving or planning. Trouble concentrating or the ability to complete basic activities with ease.
- Difficulty with familiar tasks. Common activities like driving to a family member’s home or playing a favorite game may be difficult.
- Confusion with time or place. People with Alzheimer’s can lose track of time, dates and seasons. They might even forget where they are and why. The inability to determine the passage of time and to differentiate hours from weeks or months is common.
- Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships. Some people have vision problems, which can be a sign of Alzheimer’s. Reading, contrast and color distinction may become difficult, as well as judging distance, which impacts driving ability.
- Communication difficulties. People with Alzheimer’s might have difficulty with vocabulary and struggle to find the right words. They might stop mid-conversation and not know how to continue. They might also frequently repeat themselves.
- Misplacing things and the inability to retrace steps. We all lose our keys or phone from time to time, but people with Alzheimer’s disease may put things down in odd places and not be able to retrace their steps to find the item.
- Impaired judgement. People with Alzheimer’s might start making inappropriate decisions, stop caring about their appearance or maybe forget to bathe.
- Withdrawal from work or social activities. People with Alzheimer’s disease may withdraw from work or social activities and hobbies they were once actively involved in. One reason for this could be embarrassment or shame, resulting in isolation.
- Mood and personality changes. People with Alzheimer’s can become depressed, anxious or fearful. When out of their comfort zone, they can easily become upset.
It is important to remember that dementia is not part of aging. Early-onset Alzheimer’s disease can stike people in their 40s. While there is no cure, early detection and available treatment can enable relief from some symptoms.
Don’t ignore these warning signs. Approved Home Health provides care that allows clients to remain in the home and offers relief to primary caregivers. Call today for your complimentary in home nursing assessment at 941-870-8740.
For more information, go to http://www.alz.org/10signs