It is very likely that you know someone who either has Alzheimer’s or is in a high-risk group for developing this terrible disease. Often, Alzheimer’s symptoms will show up physically before mental symptoms begin to become apparent. Sometimes, physical changes can give a red flag that an elderly person may have Alzheimers or a related disease. There are several physical symptoms you can look for in someone who has Alzheimer’s. Knowing these signs may help diagnose and treat the disease early on.
- Difficulty Performing Routine Tasks
People who suffer from Alzheimer’s often have problems engaging in routine tasks they have done many times before. It may be simple blank thoughts in the middle of a task, or more obvious like putting clothes in the freezer instead of the hamper.
- Repeating Behaviors or Tasks
After the onset of Alzheimer’s, one’s short term memory may be negatively affected to where they forget the very thing they were doing such as taking a bath, so they may repeat it over and over. Sometimes the repetitive behaviors are very subtle but other times they are quite extreme. It is very important to make note of these behaviors but also to exhibit patience with the person.
- Shorter Strides and Decreased Motor Skills
A number of diseases or ailments can result in loss of motor skills, such as Parkinson’s disease, but it is also a key symptom of Alzheimer’s. One may have trouble with handwriting, typing, getting dressed or even just walking. Our brain performs these tasks automatically using muscle memory. Similar to the way that the disease causes people to lose memories of persons or events, it also causes them to lose muscle memories. These learned “automatic” movements become muddled or impossible as the disease progresses.
According to many studies, it is estimated that many people with dementia have a tendency to wander. This often leads to more trauma when they “come to” in unfamiliar places. Naturally, as the disease progresses, the wandering becomes more extreme, but the wandering early on is subtle and should still be cause for concern.
Alzheimer’s – AWARENESS IS KEY
When it comes to degenerative neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s, they key to quality of life is early detection and monitoring. It is always best to have your loved ones seen by a specialist that can accurately diagnose the cause of their behaviors. Good care and a safe home are key to helping someone deal with Alzheimer’s with dignity and poise. Call Comforts of Home for personal care services and a home health helper that can assist your loved ones in dealing with the effects of Alzheimer’s and other conditions. We are here to help, contact us today!