Identifying The Signs Of Alzheimer's In A Loved One

May 14, 2020

According to Dementia Australia, more than 400,000 Australians are living with dementia, and we can expect that there will be more than 589,000 people with dementia by 2028 and over a million by 2058. It accounts for about two-thirds of cases; Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia in Australia.

Recognizing the indications of Alzheimer's disease at an early stage can be critical to provide proper care and avoid potentially dangerous situations. The common primary symptoms can appear as issues that are easily mistaken for a different ailment. Sometimes they are shrugged off, as usual, age-related changes.

Forgetting information learned recently or memory loss is one of the most common signs of Alzheimer's. Still, several other lesser-known indicators are unnoticed such as changes in mood or personality, problems with speaking and writing, trouble with routine tasks, disinterest in activities that they used to enjoy. Also, they tend to have increased anxiety, and they become distrustful and suspicious of others as well.

Family members and friends can miss critical signs that a senior family member needs help – and doesn't even know it. Merely keeping an eye out for forgetfulness isn't enough we need to be aware of the following signs a loved one is suffering.

  • Disruption of daily life. Some elderly may experience a greater problem with concentration. Simple tasks that once caused no difficulty may become much more challenging.
  • Unusual behaviours. Individuals with Alzheimer's may have increased anxiety, and they become distrustful and suspicious of others as well. They may experience mood and personality changes, they are easily upset at home, with friends or when out of their comfort zone.
  • Disengaged with family - If you notice that a loved one becomes increasingly withdrawn or disengaged from frequent social events, or lose interest to hobbies or activities that they enjoyed, it can be a warning sign.
  • Impairments in mobility and judgement. Does your loved one seems to be exhibiting poor judgment and it's uncharacteristic of them, do they seem afraid when using the stairs? Or are they having trouble as what to wear in cold weather? You may need to look deeper as these behaviours can be warning signs.
  • Loss of words. Some elderly with Alzheimer's disease may forget simple words or substitute inappropriate words, making sentences difficult to comprehend. They may also have trouble understanding others.

Our elderly should not be alone in their aging process; it is crucial that we continuously check-in and consider our senior loved one's health and safety. If your loved one is indicating early-onset of Alzheimer's disease, it's essential to talk to senior relatives and your doctor or caregiver. Recognizing the indications of Alzheimer's disease at an early stage can be critical to providing proper treatments. 

The CareSide are experts in assisting our seniors to continue to live at home with this condition by providing a person-centred approach to Home Care. We understand the challenges of how best to manage and cope with the situation, and can make your loved one safe and comfortable in their own home. 

If you have any questions, visit us at www.thecareside.com.au or call one of our friendly team on 1300 85 40 80.