20 Feb

Changes of Alzheimer’s – A Short Guide for an Alzheimer’s Caregiver

become an Alzheimer's caregiver to a parent or family member

Alzheimer’s disease isn’t just hard on the person who has the disease, it’s hard on their whole family. Many family members become an Alzheimer’s caregiver to a parent when they are diagnosed. Below are some of the changes that many patients go through as the disease progresses.

Physical Changes

Alzheimer’s patients often go through a lot of physical changes. This includes things like:

  • Incontinence
  • Poor eating
  • Trouble with reading, writing, understanding and speaking
  • Remembering how to brush their teeth and comb their hair

Mental Changes

Mental changes are the ones that most people think about when it comes to Alzheimer’s disease. These are things like:

  • Mild, moderate or severe forgetfulness
  • Difficulty remembering recent activities or events
  • Difficulty remembering the names of familiar people or things
  • Inability to handle money and make decisions
  • Delusions and hallucinations
  • Emotional Issues

People who have Alzheimer’s disease often are emotional because they are frustrated because they can’t remember things. This manifests in things like:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Sundowning – This means that they may feel agitation or confusion during late afternoon/early evening

Behavioral Problems

Along with the physical, mental and emotional issues that Alzheimer’s patients have, they often have behavioral problems. This can include things such as

  • Becoming aggressive
  • Repeating questions
  • Always wanting to be with their caregiver
  • Wandering
  • Agitation
  • Sleeplessness

If you want to become an Alzheimer’s caregiver to a parent or family member with the disease, these are the things that you should know about so you can be ready for them when they happen.