It’s possible that in today’s fast-paced society, forgetfulness is a common occurrence. This situation, however, may, in certain circumstances, signal the beginning of Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia, which causes slow memory loss and cognitive decline. This World Alzheimer’s Day, let’s understand this disease better and create awareness about the same.
Understanding the early warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease is crucial for preventing the severity of the illness and reducing its impact on patients of all ages, especially the elderly.
We have done our best to present you with the most often encountered symptoms and early signs of Alzheimer’s disease. First, though, let’s take a moment to understand the significance of World Alzheimer’s Day.
Significance of World Alzheimer’s Day 2022
As awareness of Alzheimer’s disease grew, Alzheimer Disease International was established in 1984. Celebrating its tenth anniversary in 1994, the organisation declared the first annual observance of World Alzheimer’s Day. They chose September 21 as the annual date to mark the occasion. However, the first annual World Alzheimer’s Month was observed in 2021.
Each year on September 21, people all around the world celebrate World Alzheimer’s Day. This day was created to educate the public about the condition, its most frequent symptoms, and the dangers it poses.
The whole month of September is recognised as World Alzheimer’s Month in several nations.
Understanding the Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s is a neurological disorder that causes cognitive decline. In addition, it makes it hard to solve problems and juggle many tasks at once. Neglecting to provide the necessary care and attention in a timely manner can cause a person’s behaviour to change over time; many people, for example, develop concentration problems and become socially withdrawn as a result.
The slow degeneration and eventual death of brain cells are common symptoms of many chronic illnesses, especially in the elderly. This Alzheimer’s Day, let’s learn about its 10 early signs and symptoms.
10 Early Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s
Dementias, such as Alzheimer’s, can cause memory loss severe enough to interfere with everyday functioning. Alzheimer’s, a degenerative disease of the brain, negatively affects memory, intelligence, and the ability to reason. There are several Alzheimer’s symptoms and indicators to look out for. Don’t dismiss them if you come across any of them. Make time for a visit to the doctor.
Following are the most common Alzheimer’s disease symptoms:
1. Life-Disrupting Memory Loss
Alzheimer’s disease often manifests itself in the early stages of the person forgetting new knowledge. Other symptoms include a reluctance to change routines and an increased reliance on memory aids (such as reminder notes or technological devices) or family members to perform tasks that were once accomplished independently, among others.
2. Problem-Solving and Planning Difficulties
People with dementia may have trouble planning and following through on tasks or handling numbers. They can become confused when following a standard recipe or forget to pay a fee every month. They may be unable to focus for lengthy periods of time and find that even simple tasks now take considerably longer than they used to.
3. Problems Doing Routine Activities
Alzheimer’s patients sometimes struggle to do even the most basic of duties. There may be moments when individuals have problems doing things that used to be second nature to them, such as driving to a known area, making a grocery list, or remembering the rules of a beloved game.
4. Inability to Place or Identify the Time
Alzheimer’s patients may get confused about the date, season, and passage of time. For them, timing is everything, so it could be hard to grasp if something isn’t happening instantly. They could get lost or forget how they got there sometimes.
5. Difficulty Grasping Spatial Connections and Visual Pictures
Some people experience visual loss as an early symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. This may cause problems with reading or equilibrium. Additionally, they may have trouble with depth perception, colour perception, and contrast enhancement – all of which might affect their ability to drive safely.
6. New difficulties with Words in Speech or Writing
Alzheimer’s patients may have difficulty keeping up or even engaging in a discussion. People with a speech impediment may pause in the middle of a sentence, be at a loss for words, or repeat themselves. They may have problems expressing themselves because of a lack of vocabulary, have trouble remembering proper nouns, or utilise incorrect nouns.
7. Inability to Keep Track
Alzheimer’s patients often rearrange their belongings or store them in unexpected spots. Things may go misplaced and they wouldn’t be able to retrace their steps to find them. In the later stages of the illness, THEY may begin to falsely accuse others of theft.
8. Lacking Good Judgement
It’s possible that people’s faculties of judgement and decision-making may shift. This might manifest in a variety of ways such as a lack of fiscal restraint or unkempt personal hygiene.
9. Disengagement from a Job or Social Activities
The capacity to carry on or understand a conversation may change for someone with Alzheimer’s disease. This may cause him or her to pull away from previous interests, friendships, and commitments. The person may have problems keeping up with a group or a particular activity they enjoy.
10. Personality and Mood Swings
People with Alzheimer’s disease may undergo emotional and character shifts during the course of their disease. They may experience mental states such as perplexity, suspicion, depression, dread, and anxiety. When at home, around friends, or in an unfamiliar environment, they may experience irritability.
Recognising what to do if you or someone you care about shows any Alzheimer’s symptoms might be challenging. Feeling apprehensive about telling others about these shifts you are facing is normal. Putting your health concerns into words may help you to accept them as “real”. Or you can be worried about hurting someone’s feelings if you mention that they’ve been showing signs of Alzheimer’s in certain areas such as their personality and daily tasking. However, these serious health problems need a medical professional’s assessment and you should take the necessary steps to learn the cause. This World Alzheimer’s Day, let’s keep these aspects in mind for the sake of our loved ones.