Alzheimer’s is a degenerative brain disease beginning with memory loss that disrupts everyday life. This gets worse over time creating an inability to perform everyday tasks like getting dressed. Most people with Alzheimer's or a related dementia are over age 65, but younger onset can begin at age 40.
Early Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer's / Dementia
- Memory loss that disrupts daily life
- Challenges in planning or solving problems
- Difficulty completing familiar tasks
- Confusion with time or place
- Trouble with vision and spatial relationships
- Problems with words in speaking or writing
- Misplacing things and difficulty retracing steps
- Decreased or poor judgment
- Withdrawal from work or social activities
- Changes in mood and personality
Learn more through the Alzheimer's Association at alz.org/alzheimers-dementia/10_signs.
Reduce Your Risk
Alzheimer's cannot be prevented, but research shows that certain healthy habits may delay onset. Learn more through the Alzheimer's Association at alz.org/help-support/brain_health/10_ways_to_love_your_brain.
Ask your doctor for a brief cognitive assessment during each annual checkup
Early detection of Alzheimer's is the best predictor of effective treatment. Your doctor should conduct the assessment if they notice any changes in your cognitive ability. You may also request an assessment during each annual checkup to monitor your cognitive abilities from year to year. Learn more through the Alzheimer's Association at alz.org/professionals/health-systems-clinicians/cognitive-assessment.
BEFORE the assessment, your doctor may ask:
- Do you get lost while walking or driving in familiar places?
- Do you have problems writing checks, paying bills or balancing the checkbook?
- Do you have difficulty shopping for groceries by yourself?
DURING the assessment, your doctor may ask:
- Please remember this name and address.
- Can you tell me something that happened in the news recently?
- What was the name and address I asked you to remember?
Page last updated 12/09/2022