Many of us are forgetful at times. However, when forgetfulness starts to affect our daily life, it might be time to consult a doctor. There are a lot of literary works, films and documentaries about Alzheimer’s disease. The popularity of this theme in the entertainment industry has taught us to identify some signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Many of us would also have seen that in its later stages, the patients would no longer recognize their loved ones.
The symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease are caused by a buildup of harmful proteins in the brain. These proteins form tangles and plaques that affect a patient’s memory and bodily functions. Memory loss and a decline in physical abilities will be more observable as the disease progresses. If you suspect that a loved one has Alzheimer’s disease, keep an eye out for these early warning symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and take action sooner rather than later.
Although some of us experience mobility issues due to the natural process of aging, this problem is usually exacerbated in those who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Some patients may also lose their physical abilities before their memory. You might notice your loved one struggling to stand up straight or frequently stumbling and losing his balance. While you can’t prevent every fall, you can take steps to minimize the risk.
The following are some mobility problems that you might observe if your loved one has Alzheimer’s disease:
- Balance or coordination problems
- Unsteadiness while walking
- Muscle spasms
- Having difficulty standing or sitting up in a chair
- Muscle weakness and fatigue
- Having bladder or bowel incontinence
Poor personal hygiene is often a sign that someone is struggling with some emotional or mental health issues. If your loved one no longer bothers with brushing his teeth, bathing or washing his hands after using the toilet, you should accompany him to the doctor to make sure that this issue is not due to a decline in cognitive ability.
Problems with Speaking
Alzheimer’s disease can also affect your loved one’s ability to express his thoughts and speak coherently. He might also find it difficult to engage in a meaningful conversation with you. You might overhear him talking gibberish at times and throwing out random words that do not make sense to you.
Difficulty Performing Familiar Tasks
Your loved one may no longer be able to complete basic tasks that he has been accustomed to doing before, such as buttoning a shirt or using cutlery. He might also become increasingly clumsy, which can show up as walking into walls or dropping items.
What You Can Do
Though these are physical symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, not every patient will experience them. If your loved one is exhibiting any of these symptoms, he should consult a healthcare professional to get an accurate diagnosis of his condition. By receiving early treatment, your loved one would be able to maintain a good quality of life.
If your loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, be sure to set attainable goals and concentrate on what he can do on a day-to-day basis. At the end of the day, the best support you can give him is your patience and understanding.