The only certainty, when diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, is that a senior’s condition will progressively worsen. The national Alzheimer’s Association has developed a very useful staging system to use as a frame of reference when coping with AD. Alzheimer's disease constantly keeps doctors, family members, and caregivers on their toes. It is instinctive for humans to want a roadmap or some sort of guide to help get us through a journey or a difficult situation. We strive to know what lies ahead to help ensure that we are adequately prepared. Following a serious medical diagnosis like Alzheimer’s disease (AD), it is only natural to explore the subject with some research. What can we expect and when can we expect it?
Keep in mind that the following staging system is not foolproof, but it can give caregivers a general idea of where their aging loved one falls along the Alzheimer’s disease spectrum. Seniors with Alzheimer’s are not guaranteed to follow these stages in a direct line. No matter how much we would like to know exactly what stage someone is in and what symptoms will develop next, we cannot. No two Alzheimer’s patients are exactly the same. To make matters even more complex, a patient’s symptoms often vary from day to day. Today, a loved one may seem like they are in stage five, and tomorrow their behaviors and symptoms may align more closely with stage four or stage six.
Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories. “I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.” ...Craig William Dayton, Film Composer
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