Alzheimer’s is a disease that progresses. It begins slowly and then worsens, normally over a period of a few years. It affects the memory, the ability to think, speaking, solving problems, and even behaviour and movement as the condition deteriorates. While not everyone will experience the same symptoms, and the disease may progress at different rates for each individual, there are similar stages that most people follow as the disease advances.
Phase 1: No Dementia
In the first stage, people with Alzheimer’s do not have memory impairment without obvious symptoms of dementia. Alzheimer’s disease is still not detected at this time. Phase 1 is also often called ‘No Cognitive Decline’.
Stage 2: Very Mild Cognitive Decline
In this stage, people with Alzheimer’s disease start experiencing normal forgetfulness associated with aging. They may forget where they left the car keys or purse. These symptoms are usually not noticed by the individual family members or doctors.
Stage 3: Mild Cognitive Decline
Individuals in this stage experience increased forgetfulness and difficulty with focus or concentration. These symptoms can cause decreased performance for those in the workforce, or for those who do not hold a job, they may experience decreased performance in tasks such as cleaning the house or paying bills. They may get lost or begin to struggle to find the right words in conversation.
Stage 4: Moderate Cognitive Decline
The fourth stage includes what is medically described as the early stages of dementia. Someone with early stages of dementia will experience more forgetting of recent events, as well as difficulty concentrating, difficulty with solving problems, and difficulties managing finances. They may struggle when making their way to a strange place alone, and also struggle to carry out complex tasks or to get their thoughts organized. For information on specialist Dementia Care Homes Taunton, visit a site like Notaro.
Stage 5: Moderate to Severe Cognitive Decline
The loss of short-term memory becomes more obvious during this stage and the people at this stage of the disease may need daily assistance with activities like getting dressed, washing themselves and getting food prepared. Problems with memory become acute at this stage, with people often forgetting the essential details that affect their daily lives – such as home address or phone number. They may not be able to identify where they are or what time of day it is. This stage lasts, on average, for one and a half years.
Stage 6: Severe Cognitive Decline
Also known as late Dementia, stage six marks a period in which a person would need substantial assistance to carry out daily activities. They may have little memory of recent events and forget the names of close friends or family members. Many people at this stage have a limited memory of their previous lives and also difficulty in completing a task or successfully applying cognitive skills such as counting backwards from 10. Care is often required at this stage, such as Dementia Care Homes Taunton
Stage 7: Very Severe Cognitive Decline
This can also be called late dementia and is the last stage in the advancement of Alzheimer’s. By this point, the majority of people will lose their speaking and communicating abilities. A person at this stage will often require assistance with the majority of their daily tasks, including toileting, feeding, dressing, bathing and other daily activities, around the clock.