10 Early Signs of Alzheimer’s
Conversations can be a struggle. Do you avoid joining in? Are you able to follow along? Do you suddenly stop in the middle of a discussion because you don’t know what to say? Do you keep repeating yourself?
7. You lose things
Everyone misplaces things from time to time, but can you retrace your steps to find them again? Do you put things in unusual places, like your watch in the refrigerator? Do you accuse people of taking things?
8. Lapse in judgment
Have you made poor decisions lately? Do you make mistakes with money, like giving it away when you normally wouldn’t?
Are you showering as often? Do you take less care of yourself? Do you dress for the wrong weather?
9. Social withdrawal
Are you scaling back on projects at work? Are you less involved with your favorite hobbies? Do you lack motivation? Do you find yourself watching television or sleeping more than usual?
10. Mood changes
Do you get upset more easily? Do you feel depressed, scared, or anxious? Are you suspicious of people?
Seeing Your Doctor
If you notice these signs, talk with your doctor. She will evaluate your physical and mental health. She will look over your medical history and do a mental status test, which looks at your memory, ability to solve simple problems, and thinking skills. She may also do blood or brain imaging tests.
She may then refer you to someone who specializes in Alzheimer’s, like a neurologist (a doctor who specializes in treating the brain and nervous system), psychiatrist, psychologist, or geriatrician (a doctor who specializes in treating older people).
You can also find a specialist through your local Alzheimer’s Association or Alzheimer’s Disease Centers.
Why You Should Make an Appointment Now
The sooner you know, the better. Starting treatment may help relieve symptoms and keep you independent longer.
It also helps you plan better. You can work out living arrangements, make financial and legal decisions, and build up your support network.