For the first time in American history, the elderly population will outnumber children by 2035, according to a projection released by the Census Bureau. Since most of the baby boomers will be over 65 years old by this time, most of the country’s population will be composed of older people and this means Alzheimer’s care will be more important than ever.
Alzheimer’s is already affecting at least 5.7 million Americans and with a growing elderly demographic, this number is expected to balloon to 13.8 million in the coming years. But while there is still no known cure for the brain disease that slowly causes a decline in memory, reasoning and thinking skills, you can still enjoy a good quality of life, especially if Alzheimer’s care is done properly and at the earliest possible time.
What are Five Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s?
Progressive Memory Loss
Forgetfulness may be a normal part of aging, but constant and especially progressive memory loss is the first and most common sign of Alzheimer’s. If you start forgetting important dates or events and recent information, and you find yourself asking repetitive questions, it might be good to schedule an appointment with your doctor to facilitate early diagnosis and management.
Challenges in Activities of Daily Living
The things you do every day become routine and will always be part of your daily life. But when you have Alzheimer’s, you may start to have difficulties in completing day-to-day tasks, especially those that require critical thinking. If you’re driving on the same familiar route, for instance, and you suddenly find yourself not knowing where to go, it could be a sign that you have Alzheimer’s disease.
Difficulty in Solving Problems
As you grow older, you may take more time to get things done even if you’ve already done them so many times before. This is especially true if you have Alzheimer’s when following a recipe, solving a puzzle or even keeping track of your expenses can be more difficult than usual. The good thing, however, is that with proper Alzheimer’s care, you will still be able to do these tasks and maybe even improve your problem-solving skills.
Poor Decision-Making Capabilities
Decision-making comes with adulthood, but if you’re suffering from Alzheimer’s, you may start to make poor judgments that can affect your quality of life. Financial matters, for instance, may take a huge blow if you start spending too much because you forgot that you have a budget. You may also find yourself not caring much about self-care. You may not enjoy bathing anymore or forget to change your clothes daily. If this happens, seek medical consultation immediately.
Withdrawal and Depression
It’s not easy dealing with Alzheimer’s, especially since you’ll feel like you can’t control things anymore. This can easily lead to withdrawal from social events and eventually, depression that thankfully, you can now deal with effectively with the help of proper Alzheimer’s care.
Indeed, there is no stopping aging and you’ll never know if you or a loved one may suffer from Alzheimer’s disease. But the most important thing is that you have the support of your family, friends and medical team to help you through this journey.
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