Dr. George Perry editor-in-chief of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease says the average Alzheimer’s patient is in their late 70s and their disease comes about slowly. Although, that is the typical patient, roughly 200,000 people in the United States sudden from early onset Alzheimer’s disease. Grandparents.com has collected a number of surprising symptoms that can warn you of its development, and they do not all involve memory problems.
1. Stealing or Other Law-Breaking Activity
Dr. Perry says that any behavioral change as people age should be of concern. Breaking the law can be a sign of Frontotemperal Dementia (FTD) a similar progressively damaging, age-related brain disorder. FTS impacts adults between 45 and 65, damaging their ability to make decisions and differentiate between right and wrong.
2. Frequent Falling
A recent study of 125 older Americans found that those who had tripped or fallen the most frequently over an eight-month period correlate with an early onset of Alzheimer’s Disease. If you or your loved one has started falling more frequently, it can possibly be a warning sign of a cognitive problem.
3. Forgetting the Function of Objects
Dr. Perry says that a forgetting what you use a key for is much more of a warning sign than forgetting where you left your keys. Forgetting the key’s or phone’s function can be considered one of the first signs of dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease.
4. Eating Inappropriate Things
Typically Alzheimer’s patients eat about 500 more calories per day than their aging counterparts, but they still tend to lose weight. Dr. Perry, “we can only guess that the change is metabolic”. Although some people will actually eat non-food before their official diagnosis. Scientists believe that it may relate to the brain receive hinger signals and being unable to figure out how to properly react to the signals.
5. Inability to Recognize Sarcasm
If you have begun to fail to recognize sarcasm, or take it literally, it can be a sign of atrophy in your brain. A study by Dr. Katherine Rankin found that Alzheimer’s patient s and those suffering from Frontotemporal Disease (FTD) were unable to recognize sarcasm in face-to-face encounters. Dr. Perry says that this is the result of the brain’s posterior hippocampus becoming affected. This limits one’s short-term memory, where one would be able to sort out the meaning of the sarcasm.
For those who have not suffered from clinical depression in the course of their lives but developed it after age 50 could be a sign of Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia. The two are not directly correlated but it will raise the overall possibility that you might have early-on set Alzheimer’s. One recent study found that people who suffered from depression after 50 were 3 times more likely to develop the Alzheimer’s related disease, vascular dementia.
7. Unfocused Staring
Alzheimer’s Disease is a change in your executive and cognitive functioning brain. This means, your ability to recall facts, memories, and information is compromised as is your brain’s ability to make decisions. Basically your brain will become unfocused. Dr. Perry warns that these times of staring in a detached way can be an early sign of so-called tangles in your brain.
All of these symptoms possibly can signal Alzheimer’s disease, but they can also be signs of another condition. Dr. Perry reminds us that a trained neurologist can easily diagnose these diseases.
See your doctor and go over the warning signs you have observed to determine the proper (if necessary) treatment. The most important thing is sharing the observations with your physician.