Stage : Basic Forgetfulness
No one has perfect memory and it is normal to forget things occasionally, especially as we get older. However, basic forgetfulness that becomes more frequent can be one of the first signs of Alzheimers disease. Oftentimes, the affected individual wont notice their forgetfulness and it is the ones around them that notice the difference. Seeking medical intervention at this point is recommended since early treatment has better outcomes in the long run.
Stage : Subjective Memory Lossage Related Forgetfulness
Many people over the age of 65 complain of cognitive and/or functional difficulties. Elderly persons with these symptoms report that they can no longer remember names as easily as they could 5 or 10 years previously they can also have trouble recalling where they have recently placed things.
Various terms have been suggested for this condition, but subjective cognitive decline is presently the widely accepted terminology. These symptoms by definition, are not notable to intimates or other external observers of the person with subjective cognitive decline. Persons with these symptoms decline at higher rates than similarly aged persons and similarly healthy persons who are free of subjective complaints. Research has shown that this stage of subjective cognitive decline lasts 15 years in otherwise healthy persons.
Stage : Lack Of Physical Control
The final stage of Alzheimers disease is when the brain has sustained so much damage that it fails to communicate with other parts of the body, causing mental and physical impairment. During this final stage, people require around the clock care and assistance for even the most basic parts of their daily routine.
Dr. Kashouty, a diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology , practices general neurology with fellowship trained specialization in clinical neurophysiology. Dr. Kashouty finds the form and function of the nerves and muscles the most interesting part of neurology, which is what led him to specialize in neurophysiology with more emphasis on neuromuscular conditions. He treats all neurological diseases, but his main focus is to treat and manage headaches, movement disorders and neuromuscular diseases.
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Stage : Second Last Stage Late Vascular Dementia
This is the last but very important out of the vascular dementia stages that I would like to reveal in this entire article and want you and my other readers to know for good.
In case the condition has still progressed, there is not much medicine can do. People in this stage have basically no ability of speaking or communicating. The only thing you can do is to give people who are in the last stage of vascular dementia the possible care and love. They really need the help for all of their activities including eating, walking and using the toilet. This is known as the late vascular dementia.
Each individual with vascular dementia experiences the illness in their own way. However, these signs and symptoms described below often occur in the later stages of most cases.
Communication problems: The people with vascular dementia will experience problems with understanding what is happening around them. They find it hard to communicate with other people. Gradually, they may lose their speech or repeat a few words. However, their expression and body language can give you clues about their feeling. Many people can still return and receive emotional signals after they lose the ability to speak.
There are some things that can put you at risk of suffering from vascular dementia. Some of the risk factors can be controlled such as lifestyle, but some others cannot be controlled such as age and genes. Some risk factors contribute to underlying cardiovascular dementia.
How Long Each Stage Will Last
There is not a clear timeline for the progression of dementia because it can vary widely by type of dementia and by person. While the average person lives 8-10 years with Alzheimers disease, some have lived 20 plus years after diagnosis. On average, individuals with vascular dementia typically live about 5 years after their symptoms begin. Those with Dementia with Lewy bodies typically live 6-12 years after their symptoms first develop, and those with frontotemporal dementia live an average of 6-8 years after symptoms first manifest.
However, not only is there no uniform disease trajectory, but individuals can also be diagnosed with mixed dementia, in which they simultaneously experience characteristics of more than one type of dementia. No two people are exactly the same, thus no two experiences of dementia will be exactly the same.
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Why It Is Useful To Know The Stages Of Dementia
A categorization of dementia stage can help inform plans for treatment and care. There is currently no cure for dementia, but there are medications that may help manage or slow some of the symptoms. It can also be important to know the disease stage to determine whether your loved one may be eligible for clinical trials. Understanding the stage of dementia can also help guide care needs as the disease progresses. Typically, in the early stages of dementia, individuals can still function relatively independently. In the middle stages, they will begin to need more assistance with some activities of daily living. Eventually, in the late stage, they will need assistance with all activities of daily living.
During these later stages of dementia, the caregivers goals often shift to focusing on preserving the persons comfort and quality of life. And although individuals may lose the ability to communicate, research suggests that aspects of the person and his or her former self still remain. This means that you may still be able to have meaningful interactions in the later stages of the disease. Suggested ways to do this include playing their favorite music or using their favorite scents anything to foster a connection and bring them joy.
Stage : Moderately Severe Dementia
When the patient begins to forget the names of their children, spouse, or primary caregivers, they are most likely entering stage 6 of dementia and will need full time care. In the sixth stage, patients are generally unaware of their surroundings, cannot recall recent events, and have skewed memories of their personal past. Caregivers and loved ones should watch for:
- Delusional behavior
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The Seven Stages Of Dementia
One of the most difficult things to hear about dementia is that, in most cases, dementia is irreversible and incurable. However, with an early diagnosis and proper care, the progression of some forms of dementia can be managed and slowed down. The cognitive decline that accompanies dementia conditions does not happen all at once – the progression of dementia can be divided into seven distinct, identifiable stages.
Learning about the stages of dementia can help with identifying signs and symptoms early on, as well as assisting sufferers and caretakers in knowing what to expect in further stages. The earlier dementia is diagnosed, the sooner treatment can start.
Stage : Moderately Severe Cognitive Declinemoderate Dementia
In this stage, deficits are of sufficient magnitude as to prevent catastrophe-free, independent community survival. The characteristic functional change in this stage is early deficits in basic activities of daily life. This is manifest in a decrement in the ability to choose the proper clothing to wear for the weather conditions or for everyday circumstances. Some persons with Alzheimers disease begin to wear the same clothing day after day unless reminded to change. The mean duration of this stage is 1.5 years.
The person with Alzheimers disease can no longer manage on their own. There is generally someone who is assisting in providing adequate and proper food, as well as assuring that the rent and utilities are paid and the finances are taken care of. For those who are not properly supervised, predatory strangers may become a problem. Very common reactions for persons at this stage who are not given adequate support are behavioral problems such as anger and suspiciousness.
Cognitively, persons at this stage frequently cannot recall major events and aspects of their current life such as the name of the current head of state, the weather conditions of the day, or their correct current address. Characteristically, some of these important aspects of current life are recalled, but not others. Also, the information is loosely held, so, for example, the person with moderate Alzheimers disease may recall their correct address on certain occasions, but not others.
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Stage : Normal Outward Behavior
Alzheimerâs disease usually starts silently, with brain changes that begin years before anyone notices a problem. When your loved one is in this early phase, they won’t have any symptoms that you can spot. Only a PET scan, an imaging test that shows how the brain is working, can reveal whether they have Alzheimer’s.
As they move into the next six stages, your friend or relative with Alzheimer’s will see more and more changes in their thinking and reasoning.
How Do You Know What Stage Of Alzheimer’s Disease A Loved One Is In
The stages of Alzheimers disease presented in this post offer a reasonable framework from which to observe symptoms and understand the progression of the disease. Since there is no medical consensus for Alzheimers stages, as there is with cancer, it is important for caregivers to be aware of the individual symptoms and situation that their patient or loved one is experiencing. While healthcare providers may refer to a patients condition as late or early stage, any specific stage is less important than the context and understanding of what this means for care going forward.
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Stage : Moderate Cognitive Decline
At this stage, a careful medical interview detects clear-cut deficiencies in the following areas:
- Impaired ability to perform challenging mental arithmetic- for example, to count backward from 100 by 7s
- The affected individual may seem subdued and withdrawn, especially in socially or mentally challenging situations
Duration Of Stages: How Long Do The Stage Of Alzheimers / Dementia Last
No two people with dementia experience the disease exactly the same way, and the rate of progression will vary by person and type of dementia. In addition, it is not uncommon for individuals to have mixed dementia, meaning they have more than one type. That said, there is a natural course of the disease, and over time the capabilities of all persons with dementia will worsen. Eventually, the ability to function goes away. Keep in mind that changes in the brain from dementia begin years before diagnosis, when there are no outward symptoms. This makes it difficult to know how much time a person has left, though there are ways to come close to knowing life expectancy.
|Life Expectancy by Dementia Type|
|2 to 8 years following pronounced symptoms|
Mild DementiaIn this early stage of dementia, an individual can function rather independently, and often is still able to drive and maintain a social life. Symptoms may be attributed to the normal process of aging. There might be slight lapses in memory, such as misplacing eyeglasses or having difficulty finding the right word. Other difficulties may include issues with planning, organizing, concentrating on tasks, or accomplishing tasks at work. This early stage of dementia, on average, lasts between 2 and 4 years.
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Stage #4 Of Alzheimers: Moderate Decline
Stage four is considered the first stage of actual dementia, which starts to impact functionality.
It goes beyond memory loss and decrease in mental endurance, which are part of the normal aging process.
Heres a snapshot of the signs of normal aging, so you can spot the difference between normal aging vs dementia:
With moderate dementia, personality changes will occur, and a person in this phase might need more guidance to perform ADLs and care for themselves.
Research has found that by the time people with Alzheimers disease reach this fourth stage, their impairments become more apparent and easier to distinguish from normal aging.
To name just a few moderate decline Alzheimers symptoms, some people with early-stage Alzheimers disease have difficulty understanding and doing simple arithmetic. They may forget details about their past, and even how to order or cook food.
One of the most challenging and confusing stages for caretakers is when a loved one has early-stage dementia. The person with this type of cognitive decline may still be independent in some aspects, like dressing themselves or driving their car, but they cant do things easily anymore, like cooking dinner or ordering from a menu.
Whats the best way to curb this initial frustration?
Try to make them feel safe and keep them active carry on conversations about their favorite music, play games with family members, go outside every day.
A Person With Dementia Doesnt Always Fit Into One Stage
Dementia affects each person in a unique way and changes different parts of the brain at different points in the disease progression.
Plus, different types of dementia tend to have different symptoms.
For example, someone with frontotemporal dementia may first show extreme behavior and personality changes. But someone with Alzheimers disease would first experience short-term memory loss and struggle with everyday tasks.
Researchers and doctors still dont know enough about how these diseases work to predict exactly what will happen.
Another common occurrence is for someone in the middle stages of dementia to suddenly have a clear moment, hour, or day and seem like theyre back to their pre-dementia abilities. They could be sharp for a little while and later, go back to having obvious cognitive impairment.
When this happens, some families may feel like their older adult is faking their symptoms or just isnt trying hard enough.
Its important to know that this isnt true, its truly the dementia thats causing their declining abilities as well as those strange moments of clarity theyre truly not doing it on purpose.
The Progression And Stages Of Dementia
Dementia is progressive. This means symptoms may be relatively mild at first but they get worse with time. Dementia affects everyone differently, however it can be helpful to think of dementia progressing in ‘three stages’.
The progression and stages of dementia
Stage #5 Of Alzheimers: Moderately Severe Decline
At stage five, your loved one might start to feel like theyre living in a fog.
Like their days blur together. For people with dementia, the passage of time can be challenging to keep track of.
You may also notice clothing starts appearing mismatched for the current season. Or forgetting simple details stored in your long-term memory, like a phone number or home address.
These mistakes happen when theres stress. And also when normal day-to-day activities take up all the brainpower, spreading the brains energy thin.
Amid all the stress of Alzheimers, its important to remember what brings you and your loved ones together.
When someone wants something done endlessly, indulge that wish until they tire of it. If theres an old dish they love from childhood, cook up some nostalgia, too.
Forcing yourself into seriousness isnt going to help anyone through these trying times be silly instead.
How Quickly Does Dementia Progress
The speed at which dementia progresses varies a lot from person to person because of factors such as:
- the type of dementia for example, Alzheimers disease tends to progress more slowly than the other types
- a persons age for example, Alzheimers disease generally progresses more slowly in older people than in younger people
- other long-term health problems dementia tends to progress more quickly if the person is living with other conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes or high blood pressure, particularly if these are not well-managed
- delirium a medical condition that starts suddenly .
There is no way to be sure how quickly a persons dementia will progress. Some people with dementia will need support very soon after their diagnosis. In contrast, others will stay independent for several years.
Stage : Others Notice A Change In Your Attire And Hygiene
In stage five, loved ones may remark that our outfit is not appropriate for the occasion or weather. They may also tell us that our hygiene habits have changed we do not bathe as much as we have historically. These moderate memory problems may not be noticeable to us and we will likely feel that our outfit and hygiene are fine. At this point, a doctor can measure a change in our cognitive ability since our last appointment. Our diagnosis may become moderate cognitive impairment.
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How To Know If Your Loved One Is In The Last Stage
Your loved one should receive regular medical care when living with Alzheimers disease. Although theres no defined test for each stage, a physician can help you determine when your loved one has reached late-stage Alzheimers based on the symptoms. Your loved ones professional caregivers may also notice signs your loved one is moving into the final stage based on changes in abilities. For instance, seniors who can no longer feed themselves may be heading into the last stage.
Families whose loved ones are unable to live at home safely often take on the task of caregiving themselves, but seniors with Alzheimers may need a level of care families simply arent able to provide. Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who dont have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesnt have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Toronto Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimers, dementia, stroke, and Parkinsons care.