When most people think of Alzheimer’s disease, they think of memory loss. However, it is also an illness that incapacitates not only the patient who has the disease, but also those who take care of them at home. More than 27 percent of Americans have a loved one with the disease, and it is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States, the 5th leading cause for individuals who are elderly individuals over the age of 65. A person acquires the disease every 70 seconds.
There are many obstacles facing those who care for someone with the disease. According to the Alzheimer’s association, 40 percent of those who care for an Alzheimer’s patient suffer from an extreme amount of emotional stress, and it can decrease the caregiver’s lifespan by years.
Alzheimer’s Awareness Week takes place worldwide this week and we, at Preferred Care at Home would like to contribute in the efforts to raise awareness about this disease. Here are 10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s, so that the disease’s progress can be slowed.
- Loss of memory– They might repeat things frequently or forget information that was recently acquired. Forgetting simple things, such as pertinent dates or important events could also be a sign.
- Difficulties in planning– It might take extended time to perform simple tasks, or they could have trouble focusing.
- Challenges in completing tasks– They frequently have problems in finishing daily chores.
- Time or place confusion– They do not know the date or how much time has passed. They may not remember where they are or how they got there.
- Visual difficulties– They might have problems seeing, reading or determining distances and colors.
- Difficulties in speaking and writing– They might not remember what they just said or they could forget simple vocabulary words.
- Losing things– They might place items in weird places and are unable to locate them. This will progressively get worse.
- Bad judgment– They could have problems managing their money, or they might possess an unkempt appearance.
- Alienation from work or friends– They could withdraw from social events, hobbies or work.
- Mood and personality changes– They might be depressed, afraid or nervous. When there is a change in routine, they could become agitated.
A person needs to consult a doctor if these signs occur so frequently that they disrupt daily life. Even though a cure for the disease does not exist, early discovery can decrease progression of Alzheimer’s, and proper treatment can help with the symptoms of Alzheimer’s.
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