Have you noticed a change in a loved one? Perhaps they seem more forgetful with bizarre behavior that seems to be getting worse like a pair of shoes found in the freezer or the stove was left on. It could be Alzeheimer's dementia. Characterized by memory loss, a decline or loss of social and occupational function, change in speech and personality and for some, even psychological disturbances. "So there are going to be not just mental cognitive challenges, but physical challenges as well," says Marci McKie, Alzheimer's Association Care Consultant. Life style factors like obesity, smoking, and high fat diet have all been correlated with development of AD. There are seven stages of AD ranging from mild to severe. The condition is diagnosed with cognitive testing, lab work, a Cat Scan or MRI of the brain. "Initially accepting the diagnosis is propbably the most difficult, says McKie. "Once acceptence is made, it kind of helps both those with the diagnose and the caregiver move forward and move on." Treatment includes supportive care and environmental control measures as well as medications. Recognition and treatment is crucial. If you are experiencing memory problems, see your doctor right away, because even people in their 40's and 50's can develop Alzheimer's dementia.
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