Alzheimer is a progressive disease that affects memory and other vital memory fuctions. Alzheimer’s is a very serious condition that affects nearly 44 million people worldwide annually and can be treated but not cured. It’s important to understand that many of the cognition and personality changes that could be a sign of Alzheimer’s could also be typical signs of aging and are perfectly normal.Learn the differences and perform simple tests that can tell you if they’re related to Alzheimer’s or not. If you do believe the person suffers from Alzheimer’s, have them see a doctor as soon as possible.
Recognizing the Signs
It is one of the most common signs of Alzheimer’s, Be aware of memory loss that disrupts daily activities and causes disorientation and confusion. short-term memory seems to go before long-term memory loss Watch for signs are failing to keep track of where Things are like times dates appointments
Tell the person several pieces of information and ask them to repeat information that 15 minutes later if they can’t remember. try it several times to determine if they are suffering from Alzheimer’s
Observe them if they misplace things people with Alzheimer’s orphaned leave their money or other belongings in strange places and can’t remember where they put them. This usually starts with possessions they don’t use often but could progress to everyday possessions like purse wallets spectacles medication. they can be irritable and can’t understand why they can’t find their possessions.people with Alzheimer’s will also accuse other people of stealing their possessions when they can’t find them
Ask a question about where exactly they’ve placed the central personal belongings that they use every day, for example, their wallet keys etc. if they can’t remember I can’t tell you where they put these items it may be a sign of Alzheimer’s.
Alzheimer Sufferers find it difficult to solve problems
If loved ones can’t solve a simple problem or work with simple numbers that is another sign of Alzheimer’s.
The early stages of Alzheimer’s are they will have trouble understanding complex problems. They spend a long time figuring out basic arithmetic working out a to-do list.
If they are in a car with you ask them how to get to a local shop give them a shopping list with prices of the items and ask them to add or subtract the amount make sure its relatively easy
Spot the signs if they are confused with time and place
People with Alzheimer’s often do lose track of time dates. They frequently check their watches for the time updates.
They can misjudge time and sometimes lose track of where and how they got to a place. Ask them what month it is or what day it is and what season it is
Loved ones with Alzheimer’s often lose track of a conversation or find it difficult to follow the train of thought. They often mix words or phrases or repeat themselves.. Be on the Lookout if they are slurring their words, using incorrect words.
Ask them to repeat words with many syllables that you would expect them to know if they are slow or are unable to pronounce the word this may be a sign of Alzheimer’s
When to seek medical attention
If you are concerned that a loved one may have Alzheimer’s disease, arrange for an appointment to see a doctor for a Mini-Mental Status (MMS examination).
This is the primary diagnostic tool for dementia, and it can also help to identify Alzheimer’s disease. Even with advances in neuroimaging, there is still no way to assess cognitive function without some diagnostic test. Psychiatrist and Neuroscientist continue to rely on the MMS as a means to examine the mental function and neuropsychiatric testing.
The goals of the MMS are to determine normal for abnormal cognition, dementia from delirium, and to diagnose primary psychiatric disease. The mental status examination evaluates problems with arousal, concentration, memory, language, visual perception, executive functioning, mood, thoughts, praxis, and calculations.
A score of less than 24 out of 30 is significant for some form of cognitive deficit.
Changes in Personality
Loved ones with Alzheimer’s often lose interest in their hobbies, friendships, work, or social activities. This lack of interest should be monitored over time.
If you know they have a love for sport or politics or whatever interest they pursue ask them to tell you about the current events or their favourite hobby.
If they are out of touch, this may be a sign of Alzheimer that they are withdrawing intellectually.
Download the Alzheimer Factsheet below
On average, people with Alzheimer’s disease live for around 8 to 10 years after they start to develop symptoms.
However, this can vary considerably from person to person. Some people with the condition will live longer than this, but others will not. Alzheimer’s disease is a life-limiting illness, although many people diagnosed with the condition will die from another cause.
As Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive neurological condition, it can cause problems with swallowing. This can lead to aspiration (food being inhaled into the lungs) which can cause frequent chest infections.
It’s also common for people with Alzheimer’s disease to eventually have difficulty eating and to have a reduced appetite.
There’s increasing awareness that people with Alzheimer’s disease need palliative care. This includes support for families, as well as the person with Alzheimer’s.
Can Alzheimer’s disease be prevented?
As the exact cause of Alzheimer’s disease isn’t clear, there’s no known way to prevent the condition. However, there are things you can do that may reduce your risk or delay the onset of dementia, such as:
- stopping smoking and cutting down on alcohol
- eating a healthy, balanced diet and maintaining a healthy weight
- staying physically fit and mentally active
These measures have other health benefits, such as lowering your risk of cardiovascular disease and improving your overall mental health.
Alzheimer is not normal ageing and we can cure it – Samuel Cohen