How to Spot the Signs of Alzheimer’s Early

While there is no cure for Alzheimer’s, early detection and intervention can help to improve quality of life and slow the progression of the disease. 

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that destroys brain cells and causes memory loss and cognitive decline. It is the most common form of dementia, affecting over 5 million Americans.

Memory loss

Memory loss is one of the most common and well-known signs of Alzheimer’s. In the early stages of the disease, people may have trouble remembering recent events, conversations, or appointments. They may also lose track of things or forget where they put them.

Difficulty with familiar tasks

Another early sign of Alzheimer’s is difficulty with familiar tasks. People may have trouble cooking, following a recipe, or paying bills. They may also get lost in familiar places or have trouble following instructions.

Confusion and disorientation

As Alzheimer’s progresses, people may become more confused and disoriented. They may have trouble understanding time and place, or they may forget who they are or who their family and friends are.

Personality and behavior changes

Alzheimer’s can also cause personality and behavior changes. People may become withdrawn, irritable, or aggressive. They may also have delusions or hallucinations.

Here are some specific examples of early signs of Alzheimer’s:

  • Forgetting important appointments or events
  • Asking the same questions repeatedly
  • Getting lost in familiar places
  • Having trouble following conversations
  • Using the wrong words or names
  • Difficulty with problem-solving or decision-making
  • Becoming more withdrawn or irritable
  • Experiencing mood swings or changes in personality

If you notice any of these signs in yourself or a loved one, it’s important to see a doctor to get evaluated. There are a number of other conditions that can cause similar symptoms, so it’s important to get a diagnosis before starting any treatment.

What to do if you’re concerned about Alzheimer’s

If you’re concerned that you or a loved one may have Alzheimer’s, the first step is to talk to your doctor. They can assess your symptoms and rule out other possible causes.

If your doctor suspects Alzheimer’s, they may order some tests, such as a blood test, brain scan, or cognitive assessment.

If you are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, there are a number of things you can do to manage the disease and improve your quality of life. These include:

  • Taking medications to slow the progression of the disease
  • Participating in cognitive stimulation activities
  • Getting regular exercise and eating a healthy diet
  • Getting enough sleep
  • Managing stress
  • Having a strong support system

Early detection and intervention is key to managing Alzheimer’s disease. If you notice any of the signs and symptoms listed above, please talk to your doctor.

Here are some websites that can help you learn more about Alzheimer’s disease:

  • Alzheimer’s Association: This website is a comprehensive resource for information about Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. It includes information on the signs and symptoms of the disease, risk factors, diagnosis, treatment, and caregiving.
  • National Institute on Aging (NIA): The NIA is the leading government agency that conducts and supports research on Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. Their website includes information on the latest research findings, clinical trials, and resources for people living with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers.
  • This website is a government-run website that provides information on Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. It includes information on the signs and symptoms of the disease, risk factors, diagnosis, treatment, and caregiving.
  • Dementia Care Central: This website is run by the University of California, San Francisco. It provides information and resources for people living with dementia and their caregivers.
  • This website is a resource for people who are caring for elderly loved ones, including people with Alzheimer’s disease. It provides information on caregiving, resources, and support.
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