THE PAIN OF ALZHEIMERS

 Hi Guys…this morning I want to talk about this disease as recently I’ve noticed how so many people are suddenly being attacked by this disease and it is a disease. I’ve seen first hand what this disease can do and it is heartbreaking to watch, people who played a major part in your life, who were active, smart, energetic individuals turn into confused little children.

I attended a funeral this weekend of my husband’s uncle who died of the disease. I was totally blown away by the amount of things he had accomplished. He was a vibrant man who touched the lives of many and was involved in politics, the arts and more. He was vital to his village council and more but to degenerate to a man who would run away, destroy things in the home, not recognise friends or even family. This is the height of sadness.

This disease to me attacks the brain and where in a normal person the brain guides our abilities and bodily functions when the brain deteriorates there is no longer that level of guidance for the body to know how to deal with it’s organs and this is what inevitably causes death. The organs shut down due to no guidance from the brain.So what is this disease called Alzheimers?

Alzheimer's disease (AD), also referred to simply asAlzheimer's, is a chronic neurodegenerative disease that usually starts slowly and worsens over time. It is the cause of 60–70% of cases of dementia. The most common early symptom is difficulty in remembering recent events (short-term memory loss).

 

Every person with Alzheimer’s experiences the disease differently, but people tend to experience a similar trajectory from the beginning of the illness to its end. The precise number of stages of Alzheimer’s is somewhat arbitrary. Some experts use a simple three-phase model (early, moderate and end), while others have found a granular breakdown to be a more useful aid to understanding the progression of the illness.

 SUMMARY:

 What are the symptoms of early onset Alzheimer's disease?

  • ·       Memory loss that disrupts dailt life….

  • ·       Difficulty planning and solving problems. ...

  • ·       Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure

  • ·       Difficulty determining time or place. ...

  • ·       Vision loss. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships.

  • ·       Difficulty finding the right words. ...

  • ·       Misplacing items often. ...

  • ·       Difficulty making decisions.

  • ·       Withdrawal from work or social activities

  • ·       Changes in Mood and personality

The most common system, developed by Dr. Barry Reisberg of New York University, breaks the progression of Alzheimer’s disease into seven stages.

Here is a summary of the seven stages of Alzeimer’s based on Dr. Resiberg’s system:

Stage 1: No Impairment

During this stage, Alzheimer’s is not detectable and no memory problems or other symptoms of dementia are evident.

 

Stage 2: Very Mild Decline

The senior may notice minor memory problems or lose things around the house, although not to the point where the memory loss can easily be distinguished from normal age-related memory loss. The person will still do well on memory tests and the disease is unlikely to be detected by loved ones or physicians.

 

Stage 3: Mild Decline

At this stage, the family members and friends of the senior may begin to notice cognitive problems. Performance on memory tests are affected and physicians will be able to detect impaired cognitive function.

People in stage 3 will have difficulty in many areas including:

  • ·     Finding the right word during conversations

  • ·       Organizing and planning

  • ·       Remembering names of new acquaintances

People with stage three Alzheimer’s may also frequently lose personal possessions, including valuables.

 

Stage 4: Moderate Decline

In stage four of Alzheimer’s, clear-cut symptoms of the disease are apparent. People with stage four of Alzheimer’s:

  • ·       Have difficulty with simple arithmetic

  • ·       Have poor short-term memory (may not recall what they ate for breakfast, for example)

  • ·       Inability to manage finance and pay bills

  • ·       May forget details about their life histories

 

Stage 5: Moderately Severe Decline

During the fifth stage of Alzheimer’s, people begin to need help with many day-to-day activities. People in stage five of the disease may experience:

  • ·       Difficulty dressing appropriately

  • ·       Inability to recall simple details about themselves such as their own phone number

  • ·       Significant confusion

On the other hand, people in stage five maintain functionality. They typically can still bathe and toilet independently. They also usually still know their family members and some detail about their personal histories, especially their childhood and youth.

 

Stage 6: Severe Decline

People with the sixth stage of Alzheimer’s need constant supervision and frequently require professional care. Symptoms include:

  • ·       Confusion or unawareness of environment and surroundings

  • ·       Inability to recognize faces except for the closest friends and relatives

  • ·       Inability to remember most details of personal history

  • ·       Loss of bladder and bowel control

  • ·       Major personality changes and potential behavior problems

  • ·       The need for assistance with activities of daily living such as toileting and bathing

  • ·       Wandering

Stages 7: Very Severe Decline

Stage seven is the final stage of Alzheimer’s. Because the disease is a terminal illness, people in stage seven are nearing death. In stage seven of the disease, people lose the ability to communicate or respond to their environment. While they may still be able to utter words and phrases, they have no insight into their condition and need assistance with all activities of daily living. In the final stages of Alzheimer’s, people may lose their ability to swallow.

 

What is the difference between Alzheimer’s and typical age-related changes?

Signs of Alzheimer's and Dementia Typical Age-Related Changes

Poor judgment and decision-making Making a bad decision once in a while

Inability to manage a budget Missing a monthly payment

Losing track of the date or the season Forgetting which day it is and remembering

it later

Difficulty having a conversation Sometimes forgetting which word to use

Misplacing things and being unable to Losing things from time to time 

retrace steps to find them

I hope you learned something more about this disease called Alzheimers and lets work hard to prevent any of our loved ones from having to suffer to badly via early detection.

References:

  • Alziemers.net

  • Heartline.com

  • Alzhiemers Association