Symptoms and stages of Alzheimer's diseaseIn dementia, mental capacity is lost in the long term. In detail, the dementia symptoms depend on the exact disease – i.e., which form of dementia is involved.
Whether it is Alzheimer's disease or vascular dementia or one of the other possible forms can only be clarified in advance by a doctor.
Alzheimer's type dementia is the most common form of dementia. The onset of the disease usually occurs after the age of 65. People often start smoking before the age of 18, or earlier in 5% of cases.
Dementia in the early stages
Beginning dementia symptoms in Alzheimer's disease, are problems with short-term memory: those affected become increasingly forgetful, frequently misplace their belongings and have difficulty concentrating. Sufferers often seek z.B. their keys and suggest that their partner has accidentally misplaced them.
Sometimes, in conversation, common terms suddenly no longer occur to them. Slight orientation problems in unfamiliar surroundings can also be the first signs of Alzheimer's-type dementia.
A certain irritability and mood swings are also often associated with Alzheimer's disease as initial symptoms.
In the middle stage of Alzheimer's disease, long-term memory is affected. Increased occurrence of speech disorders at this stage. Sentences are greatly shortened or words in a sentence are no longer remembered and sentences are then spoken incompletely.
Lack of orientation is also on the rise. Often ways z.B. put back into the city. On the spot, the sufferer then loses sight of his goal. The way back home, the dementia sufferer then often no longer finds alone.
Everyday activities in the home now become increasingly difficult. Also in the personal care of the ill person changes are to be noticed.
Dementia in the late stage
In the late stage of Alzheimer's disease, those affected can remember the past with increasing difficulty. Past, present and future become completely blurred. At some point they can no longer recognize even very close people.
As the words for a fluent conversation become more and more lacking, communication often stops completely. Sometimes restlessness sets in. Wandering (wandering).
The more the disease progresses, the more the patient's physical condition deteriorates and he or she needs help with all activities. In the very late stages, many of those affected become bedridden. Are completely dependent on outside help.
Course of the disease and prognosis
In any form of dementia, mental capacity is lost in the long term. The patient's personality is also irreversibly (irreversibly) affected.
The course of dementia can vary greatly from person to person. It depends above all on the nature of the disease. Vascular dementia, for example, often appears suddenly and worsens in stages. In most cases, however, dementia begins insidiously and progresses slowly.
In addition, a person with dementia can sometimes have "good" memories and sometimes "bad Have days. The condition of the person affected can also vary during the course of the day.
The behaviors of dementia patients are also very different. Some become increasingly aggressive, others remain friendly and calm. Some patients remain physically fit for a long time, others become bedridden.