Symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease or memory loss symptoms will vary from person to person. Alzheimer’s disease symptoms may include, but are not limited to, memory loss, change in thinking skills, personality, or other behavioral changes.
If you answer “yes” to any of the following questions, an evaluation is warranted.
- Have there been changes in memory or other cognitive functions?
- Is there a change in ability to perform tasks at home or at work?
- Is there a change in behavior that affects relationships or daily living?
- Is there a change in personality?
- Are medications being taken that may be facilitating or impairing cognitive or behavioral functioning?
- Has another medical professional recommended a neuropsychological evaluation?
DOESN’T EVERYONE EXPERIENCE MEMORY LOSS? WHY SHOULD I BE CONCERNED?
Yes, everyone does experience memory loss. Research has shown that brain volume and cognitive abilities peak in the 20’s, and then begin to gradually decline. It is normal for people to experience change in memory over their lifetime, with more decline as a person ages. Common cognitive changes include loss in ability to multitask or in remembering new information, like the name of a person or place. It can be difficult to determine if someone is experiencing memory impairment beyond what is expected in normal, healthy brain aging. Not sure if your cognitive changes are normal?
ARE ALZHEIMER’S AND DEMENTIA THE SAME THING?
While the terms are related, Alzheimer’s disease and dementia are not the same thing. Dementia is a general term for a decline in cognition that is significant enough to interfere with daily functioning and which represents a decline from baseline.
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia and accounts for 60 to 80 percent of all dementia cases. The neurological hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease is the formation of plaques and tangles in the brain. There are other forms of dementia in addition to Alzheimer’s disease, and obtaining an accurate diagnosis is important for treatment and care planning.
CAN ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE BE CURED?
No, there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease… yet. While there are FDA-approved medications that slow down the progression of the disease, there are currently no medications available that will stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. The only way to find a cure for Alzheimer’s disease is through clinical trials, which are research studies of medications that aim to stop the progression of the disease.
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