Going, Going, Where did it go again?
Ever had the urge to club someone with your walker? What if you already did and didn’t know it? How about wonder why that person in the mirror keeps following you? Ever try to make a telephone call with a doorknob? This may seem like an exaggeration of sorts to most, but in Advanced Stages of Alzheimer’s, this could be your daily routine! Alzheimer’s Disease is best treated when caught by early detection.
Alzheimer’s affects many, far and wide. It’s indiscriminate and relentless. It begins subtlety. An affected person may find themselves misplacing things, using inappropriate words or having mood swings. Little miss cranky didn’t have her Midol today? Maybe not. There can be violent changes or agitation. Even less noticeable would be those who recluse. Some isolate themselves from family, work, friends and more. Unusual behaviors may be exhibited such as placing dirty dishwater in the fridge and milk in the pantry.
As the disease progresses, a person suffering from AD could behave inappropriately, such as deviant sexual behaviors, like masturbating in public or fondling other patients against their will. AD patients may also imagine people present who are not. They sometimes accuse others of outrageous acts of theft. For example, my grandmother used to accuse the next door neighbor of stealing her sausage. It didn’t stop there; she also thought the Jews made the television fuzzy. At one point, I asked her where she learned this “fact” and to my complete shock, she stated, “C-Span!” In my eight year old mind, I took it in and well, I lost it. I started laughing and unfortunately offended her.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a cure for AD; however, with early detection, interventions can be implemented to slow the disease’s progression. There are many resources available on-line which can help one identify what may be considered abnormal and/or symptoms of the disease. There are medical tests which can assist in the diagnosis of the disease. The best way to get peace of mind is to talk to your doctor. There are many new medications available, herbal remedies, and even some new medical advances, such as Deep Brain Stimulation, which can slow the disease progression. If you or anyone you know is concerned about the possibility of having Alzheimer’s, contact your doctor. Perhaps it would be wise to learn to recognize symptoms and catch the early stages before you find yourself having intimate relations with the hospitals potted fern!