Alzheimer’s disease can range from mild to severe as per the severity of sign & symptoms. The scale ranges from a state of mild impairment, through to moderate impairment, before eventually reaching severe cognitive decline.
Mild Alzheimer’s disease :
People with mild Alzheimer’s disease develop memory problems and cognitive difficulties that may include the following:
- Taking longer than usual to perform daily tasks.
- Difficulty handling money or paying the bills.
- While performing fine motor tasks such as writing, drawing, or dressing, certain movement coordination and planning difficulties may be present.
- Wandering and getting lost.
- Experiencing personality and behavior changes, such as getting upset or angry more easily, hiding things, or pacing.
- Difficulties with language. Language problems are mainly characterized by a shrinking vocabulary and decreased word fluency, leading to a general impoverishment of oral and written language
Moderate Alzheimer’s disease :
In moderate Alzheimer’s disease, the parts of the brain responsible for language, senses, reasoning, and consciousness are damaged. This can lead to the following symptoms:
- Greater memory loss and confusion.
- Speech difficulties become evident (inability to recall vocabulary, which leads paraphasias)
- Reading and writing skills are progressively lost.
- Difficulty recognizing friends or family.
- An inability to learn new things.
- Difficulty performing tasks with several stages, such as getting dressed
- Difficulty coping with new situations
- Impulsive behavior
- Hallucinations, delusions, or paranoia.
Severe Alzheimer’s disease :
In severe Alzheimer’s disease, plaques and tangles are present throughout the brain, causing the brain tissue to shrink substantially. This can lead to:
- An inability to communicate. Language is reduced to simple phrases or even single words, eventually leading to complete loss of speech.
- Extreme apathy, exhaustion and aggressiveness can still be present.
- Muscle mass and mobility deteriorates.
- Dependency on others for care.
- Being unable to leave bed all or most of the time.