As age catches up with you, your body and your mind slow down. This is a natural part of life; everyone eventually experiences body aches and pains, weariness, and forgetfulness. Because of this, it can be difficult to distinguish behavior changes that are simply due to aging from those that indicate something more serious — like the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
If you’re worried because you or someone you love is finding it more difficult to perform everyday tasks and remember everyday things, it’s important to find out the severity of the issue. Look into these nine early signs of Alzheimer’s disease. If one or more of these symptoms sound all too familiar, make an appointment with a medical professional.
9. Memory Loss
Probably the most obvious sign of Alzheimer’s is also a common problem that comes with aging: memory loss. But those experiencing typical age-related memory loss are usually able to remember whatever they’re forgetting without assistance. If you forget things that you’ve just learned, or if you forget important dates and names of people who you know well and need the help of others to remember, it may be a sign of something serious. An overreliance on reminder notes and memory aids or asking people for the same information over and over again can be signs of Alzheimer’s.
A person with Alzheimer’s will experience random bouts of confusion regarding time and place. You might find yourself going somewhere and suddenly forget what you were doing, or the day of the week might slip your mind. Unlike with age-related confusion, you’re unable to figure these things out without the aid of others.
7. Trouble Solving Problems
Experiencing difficulty with problem-solving skills can be another symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. Following simple instructions for a project or a recipe can become too hard to do. Balancing your budget may have become tricky as well. Things that require complex thought, which you used to be able to handle effortlessly, are no longer simple and seamless.
6. Problems with Words
Words and vocabulary, whether verbal or written, are difficult for someone dealing with Alzheimer’s. You may struggle to recall a specific word and call things by the wrong name. Conversation becomes difficult to take part in or join, as you may find yourself stopping in the middle of a discussion and don’t know how to continue.
5. Losing or Misplacing Items
Having a tendency to lose things may be another symptom of Alzheimer’s and is closely related to memory loss. While healthy people often misplace items, those with Alzheimer’s tend to lose things by putting them in strange places, like leaving your car keys in the refrigerator. If you’re dealing with Alzheimer’s, you may be unable to retrace your steps to find what you’ve lost and may accuse others of stealing.
4. Bad Judgement
People with Alzheimer’s tend to have problems with judgement and make bad decisions, only these mistakes happen more regularly and sometimes on massive scales. Maybe you’ve lost money or given a large sum away, or maybe you’ve struggled to dress for the right weather conditions. Those dealing with Alzheimer’s also begin to take care of themselves less when it comes to grooming and hygiene.
3. Poor Vision
In some instances, problems with vision can be a sign of Alzheimer’s. You may be experiencing difficulty reading, telling colors apart, or judging distance, all of which can be a problem when it comes to driving.
2. Mood Changes
Another change people with Alzheimer’s experience is a shift in personality and mood. You may become more easily upset, or may be more suspicious of others. You may also have feelings of anxiety, fear, and depression.
1. Social Withdrawal
Due to the many changes brought on by the disease, those with Alzheimer’s may withdraw from social activities. Maybe you don’t want to leave your comfort zone, so you avoid public activities where you might have to carry on conversations. You may neglect doing the things you once loved, like with hobbies, sports, or work projects.
Noticing and acknowledging these symptoms can be difficult, but they shouldn’t be overlooked. The earlier you know if you or your loved one is developing Alzheimer’s, the sooner you can begin treatment and prolong your independence from the disease. Meet with your doctor if these symptoms are affecting your daily life. Do what is best for you, and you can make plans regarding your living situation, as well as enlist the help and support of your loved ones.
The Alzheimer's Site is a place where people can come together to support those whose lives have been affected by Alzheimer's disease. In addition to sharing stories of hope and love, shopping for the cause, and signing petitions, visitors can take just a moment each day to click on the purple button to help provide care for those living with Alzheimer's disease and research for a brighter future. Visit The Alzheimer's Site and click today - it's free!