Early Symptoms Associated with Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s disease can affect individuals differently. In some situations, cognitive decline can occur at a fast rate, while for other seniors, it could happen slowly. As a family caregiver, you must continuously monitor your senior loved one’s behavior, assessing any changes as quickly as possible. Below are some early signs of Alzheimer’s disease and ways to address those changes.

Misplaced Items

Although it’s not unusual for individuals of all ages to misplace keys, remote control devices, phones, and other objects, losing different items regularly could be an early sign of Alzheimer’s disease. Monitor how often your loved one misplaces things around the home or while being out with family and friends.

Memory loss is a common cause of mismanaging objects. For instance, your loved one could set a remote control down in the laundry room while transferring clothes from the washing machine to the dryer or put items in a safer place due to individuals stopping by later that day. The damage to the brain caused by Alzheimer’s will affect how your loved one creates and retrieves memories, leading to misplaced items.

Aging adults with Alzheimer’s disease can benefit from receiving professional memory care. Seniors need regular mental stimulation when managing memory-related conditions, and a reliable in-home caregiver who has extensive training in dementia care can be a great asset. Our services include comprehensive personal care, homemaking, and companionship services available on an hourly, overnight, live-in, or 24-hour basis.

Poor Judgment

The usage of purposeful behaviors could change significantly when a senior has developed Alzheimer’s. During the early stages of the disease, you may notice your loved one taking on things they would never approve of in the past. Other examples of poor judgment could include your loved one focusing less on their appearance in terms of bathing frequency, the clothing they wear, or failing to keep certain areas of the home clean.

It’s best to take your loved one to a doctor for testing instead of ignoring the changes or fearing you have misread a situation. Doing so can ensure your loved one receives the necessary treatment, and it allows you and other family caregivers to create strategies that help your loved one delay the progression of the disease while keeping them safe.

Lack of Confidence

Becoming fearful of new challenges could be an early sign of Alzheimer’s disease, and it’s best to react rather than ignore the situation. Although you should be mindful that your loved one may consider an activity too difficult and unsafe, don’t always assume this is the case. For example, if your loved one becomes too hesitant to meet with friends and family for celebrations, this could be due to their brain having difficulty understanding the physical and emotional factors associated with the situation.

If you notice your loved one becoming more tentative, look for ways to boost their confidence. For instance, instead of allowing your loved one to go into situations unprepared, discuss what sorts of things you think will happen and create accessible methods to handle them. You can address things such as different discussions, physical activities, and bathroom etiquette.

Older adults living with Alzheimer’s often find it challenging to complete everyday activities. There are many reasons seniors might need assistance at home. Some may require regular mental stimulation due to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, while others might only need part-time assistance with exercise and basic household tasks. Corio home care San Francisco by Institute on Aging (IOA) is a leading home care provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life.

Problem-Solving Difficulties

If your loved one begins facing difficulty with paying bills on time or in the correct amounts, this could be an early sign of Alzheimer’s. Even if these are routine tasks, your loved one may not be able to take them on. The confusion is due to your loved one’s brain not reacting or functioning normally, causing them to have more difficulty with solving problems.

Instead of handling these things for your loved one, try to tailor problem-solving tasks in ways that take advantage of their strengths and avoid their weaknesses. Doing so can boost your loved one’s confidence and encourage them to seek independence without compromising their safety.

Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without someone there to help. Corio by IOA’s live-in care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place. To hire a compassionate, dedicated caregiver, call us at (415) 750-4111 today.

 

Steps to Take When a Loved One Receives an Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

Getting an Alzheimer’s diagnosis can be devastating for seniors and their family members. However, while Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia pose unique challenges, it doesn’t have to significantly diminish the quality of your aging loved one’s life. Here are some effective interventions to consider if your loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

Anticipate Negative Behaviors

People with Alzheimer’s, especially those with advanced Alzheimer’s disease, may be prone to certain negative behaviors. These may include aggressiveness, fear, and combativeness. It’s important to anticipate these behaviors before they occur so you can handle them positively and therapeutically. For example, if your loved one acts out verbally or physically, calmly redirect them to another activity. Another way to overcome negative behaviors is to engage your loved one in their favorite activities, which may include crafts, singing, dancing, and reminiscing about pleasant memories from childhood.

 

A professional caregiver with training and expertise in assisting seniors living with cognitive impairment can be a wonderful source of support for your loved one with Alzheimer’s. For many seniors, 24-hour home care is an essential component of aging in place safely and comfortably. However, it’s important for them to have caregivers they can trust and rely on. At Corio by IOA, we extensively screen all of our live-in and 24-hour caregivers and only hire those who have experience in the senior home care San Francisco industry. Our compassionate team  ensures seniors with dementia or Alzheimer’s can remain in the comfort of their home with a reduced risk of injury or serious illness.

Maintain a Calm Environment

Seniors with Alzheimer’s can startle easily and become agitated in environments that are too stimulating or loud. Maintain a peaceful environment by playing relaxing music, keep the volume lower on the television, and ask family and friends to speak in low tones to  maximize your loved one’s comfort levels. Further, always ask your loved one if he or she is comfortable receiving visitors before inviting them. If your loved one expresses displeasure or anxiety at the thought of having company, postpone the visit to a later date.

Work with the Primary Care Physician

Another important intervention to consider if your loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s is to closely work with their primary care physician. If your loved one is taking medications for enhanced cognition or other medications to manage Alzheimer’s disease, ask the doctor about any potential side effects. If side effects are noticed, call the doctor as soon as possible so he or she can either adjust the dosage or prescribe a different drug. The primary care physician can also recommend strategies for managing anxiety and depression that may be present in people with dementia.

Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted senior care provider. Families need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Corio by Institute on Aging (IOA) is here to help.

Monitor for Wandering

Another common effect of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia is a condition known as “sundowning.” This refers to the phenomenon that occurs during the evening or when the sun goes down. Seniors with sundowning syndrome may become more confused at night and even attempt to wander away from the home. Sundowning also raises the risk of accidents and injuries in the home, such as falling, leaving the stove on, and consuming dangerous products such as medications or cleaning supplies. Installing extra locks or alarms on the doors can alert you if your loved one tries to leave the home. If this happens, gently redirect your loved one or provide orientation in a way that doesn’t lead to anxiety, fear, or anger.


Aging adults with Alzheimer’s disease can benefit from receiving professional memory care. Seniors need regular mental stimulation when managing memory-related conditions, and a reliable in-home caregiver who has extensive training in dementia care can be a great asset. Our services include comprehensive personal care, light housekeeping, and companionship services on an hourly, overnight, live-in, or 24-hour basis. If you need professional home care for your loved one, we’re just a phone call away. Reach out to Corio by IOA today at (415) 750-4111.