Alzheimer's Disease: 10 Early Warning Signs
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of dementia.
It is a progressive disease beginning with mild memory loss and possibly leading to loss of the ability to carry on a conversation and respond to the environment, according to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.
Any of these symptoms, change in behaviour of a person can be a warning sign of Alzheimer's. It is better to consult a doctor if you notice any such symptoms and get help before it worsens.
The first and foremost sign of the onset of Alzheimer's is the loss of memory. The patients tend to forget recent events or important occasions. They tend to repeat their sentences, completely unaware that they had asked it before.
Difficulty in Daily Life
The memory loss affects the daily life of people in different ways. They may have difficulty in their day-to-day activities like bathing, washing and getting dressed. They may need help even for their personal tasks.
Difficulty in Planning
People with Alzheimer's face difficulty in their day-to-day planning and cannot perform any sequential tasks. They may start to forget the rules of their favourite game, recipe of their favourite dishes and meals among others.
Confused with Time and Place
It becomes difficult for those suffering from Alzheimer's to keep track of date or time. They can only keep track of things that happens in front of them at that particular time, else they do not realise the passage of time, change of seasons or phases of the day. They may often forget about their address or where they are at that exact moment.
Visual & Spatial Problems
Alzheimer's affects the cognitive functioning as well as brain that helps to understand visuals. The patients have difficulty in recogninsing the images. They often cannot process the visual information.
Difficulty in Speaking and Writing
According to a study by NCBI, patients with Alzheimer's have difficulty in writing, reading, comprehending or understanding the meaning of a word. They may not be fluent in their language, might use inappropriate references or words with wrong meanings in sentences.
The only way to slower this cognitive impairment is by continuing to make them read and write from an early stage of the disease.
Changes in Mood and Behaviour
A person suffering from Alzheimer's may experience mood changes and people may be able to point out the changes in their personality and behaviour.
They may face problems like anxiety, inhibitions, mood swings, depression, delusion (as if they have lost something or something has been stolen), difficulty in trusting others, aggressiveness and so on.
Poor Judgement and Decision Making
The Alzheimer's patients have fluctuations in their cognitive behaviour which affects their ability to make decisions, worsening their judging skills as well. They might end up wearing inappropriate clothes according to a weather, might not be able to take any action during emergencies like accidents while driving or if something does not go according to the plan.
It is quite normal to misplace things, but what happens with Alzheimer's patients is that they misplace things and keep them at unusual places than their normal place. They not only keep it elsewhere, they forget about its original place and the place where they put it themselves.
Difficulty in Socialising
Alzheimer's patients find it difficult to carry on with a conversations, may be due to their verbal problems. They avoid meeting their friends or relatives due to anxiety and stop going to parties or practicing group activities for the fear of being judged.
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