When most people think about Alzheimer’s disease, the first symptom that comes to mind deals with memory problems. However, the earliest signs of Alzheimer’s involve much more than forgetfulness and misplaced memories. It is very important to be aware of what these surprising symptoms are, so that you can take quick action to get educated and begin treatment. Here are five of the earliest signs of Alzheimer’s.
Early Symptoms of Alzheimer’s
Mood and Personality Changes
Behavioural and personality changes are some of the earliest signs of Alzheimer’s. One was to know if your loved one is experiencing mood or personality changes is if they act out or engage in inappropriate activities. The ability to make decisions can be affected by the disease, which prevents people from being able to discern right from wrong.
When researchers observed the brain scans of aging patients who fell most frequently, they discovered that there was a connection between frequent falls and early onset of Alzheimer’s. This may seem like a very strange connection, but if your loved one is falling frequently, be sure to tell your doctor as it may be an indicator of a cognitive problem associated with Alzheimer’s.
Staring without Focus
Alzheimer’s changes cognitive and executive functioning in the brain. This means that the ability to recall facts, information, and memories, is damaged. In other words, the brain becomes unfocused, so staring in a distant and detached way may be an early sign of Alzheimer’s. There may also be signs of other underlying conditions, so to rule out Alzheimer’s or any other health issues, speak with your physician and undergo a proper assessment.
Eating Inappropriate Things
An early sign of Alzheimer’s involves patients who eat more than normal, yet still tend to lose weight. Some researchers believe the change is related to the metabolism. Be sure to observe your aging relatives’ eating habits, as some will even eat inedible objects like paper. Since Alzheimer’s affects the brain’s memory, patients may receive hunger signals but may be unable to discern how to respond to them.
New Problems with Words
If your loved one has trouble following or joining a conversation, this may be an early sign of Alzheimer’s. For example, they may stop in the middle of a conversation and be unable to continue their train of thought or may repeat themselves. Vocabulary issues; trouble finding the right word for a place, object, or person; or calling things by the wrong name may also be an early sign of Alzheimer’s.
What to Do if You Suspect Alzheimer’s?
If you notice any of the above symptoms, or any unusual behaviour with your loved one, the worst thing you can do is to ignore them. Instead, schedule an appointment with your family doctor because early detection can help you get the maximum benefit from available treatments, and you can explore options that will help your loved one maintain a level of independence for a longer period of time. You may also have the opportunity for your loved one to participate in clinical drug tests that can help advance research for a better solution.
For family members who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, you can make them more comfortable and keep them safe by hiring Alzheimer’s home care in Vaughan or Toronto. Consider giving Ronnie’s Home Care Services a call. We provide professional senior care in Toronto and Vaughan, and are dedicated to providing comprehensive senior in-home care in Vaughan, senior and elder care services, Alzheimer’s and dementia care, as well as home healthcare services for seniors in Toronto and the surrounding cities. All of our staff members are required to have a CPR & first aid certificate, clean record, vulnerable police check, and a PSW certificate (if necessary). We are available from four hours a day to 24/7 live-in care. For more information about our services, contact us today.