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This month we have a special guest columnist, Victoria Macioce-Stumpf. Victoria is a student at Oakland University in their Wellness, Health Promotion, & Injury Prevention program who is interning with PVM.

As a person ages, they may begin to notice gradual changes in their memory, how they process things or even their ability to perform certain tasks. While most changes may be age-related, it is important to determine if there are any signs or symptoms of early Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s is a progressive and degenerative brain disease that may begin in middle or old age and is characterized by memory loss, confusion, behavioral changes and more.

According to the national Alzheimer’s Association, there are 10 early signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s:

  1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life.
  2. Challenges in planning or solving problems.
  3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure.
  4. Confusion with time or place.
  5. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships.
  6. New problems with words in speaking or writing.
  7. Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps.
  8. Decreased or poor judgment.
  9. Withdrawal from work or social activities.
  10. Changes in mood and personality.

If you or a loved one has any of the signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s, please schedule an appointment with a physician for diagnosis, information and support. Treatments are changing all of the time, thanks to research and scientific breakthroughs. Early detection will lead to treatments that may help slow the progression of the disease, as well as provide relief of the symptoms.

To learn more about the signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease compared to typical age-related changes, read the Alzheimer’s Association 10 Warning Signs Checklist and check out the information and activities from their Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month page.