If you have a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease, you may be wondering what to expect. Alzheimer’s comes in many variations and effects individuals in a multitude of ways. What some people don’t know is that the Alzheimer’s disease has seven stages that an individual will go through. Each stage has its own characteristics and symptoms. So what are the seven stages and what does each stage mean for your loved one? Read below to find out.
Stage 1: No Impairment
In the first stage an individual will not experience any memory loss and medical professionals do not notice any symptoms.
Stage 2: Very Mild Decline
A person may experience some mild memory slips such as misplacing an object or forgetting the day of the week. Still no medical evidence is detected in this stage.
Stage 3: Mild Decline
During this stage, medical professionals can detect problems with concentration and memory. Family, friend and co-workers may begin to notice difficulties that the individual is having. Some common stage 3 difficulties include: trouble remembering the name of someone they just met, trouble planning or problem solving, problems coming up with the correct word or name for an object, and performance issues in a social or work setting.
Stage 4: Moderate Decline
In this stage, careful medical interviews should be able to detect symptoms in numerous areas.
-Forgetting one’s own personal history
-Increased difficulty completing complex tasks like paying bills or keeping track of finances
-Becoming socially withdrawn
-Inability to recall recent events
Stage 5: Moderately Severe Decline
Individuals begin to need help with day-to-day activities and gaps in their memory become very noticeable. In this stage those with Alzheimer’s may:
-Be confused about where they are or what day it is
-Have trouble with basic mental math
-Not be able to remember their address or phone number
-Still recall significant details about themselves and family members
-Still not need any assistance with eating or using the toilet.
Stage 6: Severe Decline
An individual’s memory continues to worsen, personality changes begin to take place and they need extensive help with daily activities. Symptoms include:
-Personality and behavior changes (suspiciousness, delusions, compulsiveness or repetitiveness)
-Need assistance dressing, bathing and using the toilet
-Lose of awareness of recent events as well as their surroundings
-Changes in sleep patterns
Stage 7: Very Severe Decline
In the final stage of Alzheimer’s a person loses the ability to respond to their environment, have a conversation and control movement. They need help with all aspects of their daily activities and personal care. Their reflexes will become abnormal, muscles will grow rigid and their swallowing will be impaired.