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Early Signs of Alzheimer’s Disease

Early Signs of Alzheimer’s Disease

Commonly Reported Signs & Symptoms of Alzheimer’s

Knowing the early signs of this form of dementia can help your health care team support your loved one's needs. In light of World Alzheimer's Month, the health experts at ATRIO Health Plans are here to share what you should look out for.

What is Alzheimer’s Disease?

Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia, accounting for 60-80% of dementia cases. This degenerative disease negatively affects cognitive brain function, gradually worsening over time. Eventually, someone living with Alzheimer’s will lose the ability to take care of themselves, hold conversations, or even respond to their surroundings.

The average person suffering from this form of dementia will live for 4 to 8 years following diagnosis. Although there is no cure for Alzheimer’s, there are ways to treat the condition to slow its progression—making early detection key.

Early Signs & Symptoms

Memory Issues

Having memory issues is one of the most common signs of Alzheimer's in its beginning stages. Many instances that can suggest that someone is experiencing memory loss include:

  • Forgetting recently learned information.
  • Forgetting important dates and events.
  • Depending on memory aids like notes.

Misplacing Common Items

Another commonly experienced symptom during the early stages of Alzheimer’s is misplacing items by putting them down in unusual places. This is also typically accompanied by accusing the people around them of stealing from them.

Personality changes

Because Alzheimer's affects cognitive brain function, it negatively impacts a person's ability to regulate their mood and can result in personality changes. Some common changes include:

  • Increased irritability.
  • Confusion.
  • Anxiety and paranoia.
  • Depression.

Trouble With Written & Verbal Communication

Alzheimer’s disease also impacts a person’s ability to express themselves and understand complex ideas. This can cause issues when it comes to both verbal and written communication skills. Some observable signs of impaired communication skills include:

  • Repeating phrases or retelling stories.
  • Stopping mid-sentence.
  • Forgetting names for everyday objects.
  • Sending texts or writing notes that don’t make sense.

If you suspect that your loved one may be displaying early signs of Alzheimer’s, be sure to seek medical attention to help slow the progression of their condition,