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June is Alzheimer’s awareness month. To help caretakers and family of people with Alzheimer’s disease, we’re providing information and resources.
10 Symptoms of Alzheimer’s
If you notice any of these in yourself or a loved one, make an appointment to get checked by a doctor.
1. Memory Loss That Disrupts Daily Life
This is different from age-related changes that include things like temporarily forgetting names or appointments. Alzheimer’s memory issues cause confusion that isn’t easily overcome and make daily life more challenging.
2. Difficulty Planning or Problem Solving
This is not the same as making an occasional mistake balancing your checkbook. People with Alzheimer’s may no longer be able to solve problems that would have once been simple. Things like not knowing how to get to a store they’ve been to before or finding using the phone confusing.
3. Trouble Completing Familiar Tasks
If you sometimes need help figuring out electronics, that’s probably okay. This symptom is about more complex tasks like driving to a familiar location or managing a budget.
4. Confusion with Time or Place
Temporarily forgetting the day of the week is normal. Losing track of seasons, the passage of time, or forgetting where you are and how you got there is not.
5. Trouble Processing Visual Data
People with Alzheimer’s may have difficulty with depth perception or processing colors. However, if you’ve always worn glasses or have been diagnosed with cataracts, check with your eye doctor before leaping to conclusions about any vision changes being related to Alzheimer’s.
6. New Issues with Words
Everyone struggles to find the right word sometimes. But if you can’t figure out how to join or continue a conversation or call things by the wrong name, it’s time to get checked.
7. Always Losing Things and Being Unable to Locate Them
Again, this happens to everyone sometimes, but people without Alzheimer’s can eventually retrace their steps.
8. Poor Judgement
We all make bad decisions once in a while. People with Alzheimer’s, however, are more susceptible to scams and may pay less attention to personal hygiene.
Not every social situation is fun and exciting. That’s normal. For people with Alzheimer’s social situations cause stress and they may deliberately start stepping away from things they’ve always loved to do.
10. Mood and Personality Changes
People with Alzheimer’s often experience personality changes. Any changes to their comfort zone can cause mood swings. However, developing a routine and being irritable if they’re disrupted is an age related change.
Learn more about these symptoms, and what to do at alz.org.
Fundraisers are key to finding treatments and cures. Check out The Longest Day to get started.
Having a routine is easier both for the person with Alzheimer’s and for the caretaker. Check out these tips on making a daily routine.
Care takers need support too! Find your local chapter of The Alzheimer’s Association.
Learn the latest facts and figures about Americans living with Alzheimer’s Disease.