It is known that the memory of the elderly people may show some signs of fatigue. However, when memory problems begin to make it difficult to carry out the daily activities and tend to worsen over time, direct medical assistance should be sought. Read the main dementia symptoms as experienced by patients in the early stages of the disease.
Memory disorders: The Alzheimer’s disease main symptom and one of the first suspicious signs is memory loss, particularly recent memory disorders (e.g. repeating the same question many times). As the disease progresses, memory loss becomes more intense and more complicated that the patient may forget his own name and be unable to recognize familiar faces.
Orientation disorders: In the Alzheimer’s disease disturbances of the reality orientation in current events are observed. The patients have loss of orientation, they are easily lost in the street, even in their neighborhood, forgetting how they arrived at their destination or how to turn back home. This loss of orientation is accompanied by disturbances of sense of time.
Difficulty with everyday tasks: Those who suffer from the Alzheimer’s disease may find it difficult to understand and carry out daily chores, such as to use the phone, cook, write a letter, and also forget the steps of these processes which seem so simple. This difficulty should not be confused with the difficulty one may face in order to solve a complex problem.
Critical ability disorders: One of the signs of the Alzheimer’s disease is the reduced critical ability. One manifestation of this disorder is the inability to make decisions for oneself and others such as wearing gloves and a hat in the middle of summer.
Disorders of understanding and expressing speech: Alzheimer’s disease patients experience difficulties with their speech, forgetting words or substituting words with uncommon ones.
Apart from the mental problems mentioned above which are identified in patients with the Alzheimer’s disease, there are also some symptoms of psychiatric nature, resulting from the chemical changes that occur in the patient’s brain.
Mood and behavior problems: Changes in mood occur very often in the Alzheimer’s Disease situations as patients can pass from one stage to another for no apparent reason (e.g., from anger to calm, or from depression to joy). Also, patients often show aggression, irritability, negativism, stubbornness.
Delusions: (e.g. suspicion against strangers or familiar faces). Hallucinations: (mainly visual, concerning familiar faces from the past that are probably not alive anymore).
The onset of the Alzheimer’s disease is slow and progressive. The symptoms mentioned above may manifest differently in each patient and worsen as the disease progresses. Usually (but not necessarily) the first symptom noticed is the memory disorders, followed by the rest.
Alzheimer’s disease leads gradually to a complete, progressive disorganization of the patient’s personality. Moreover, other dementia syndromes may also exhibit the same or similar characteristics.
If you are experiencing memory problems that make your daily life difficult, consult a specialist.