TheElderExpo.com that features products and writes articles to help elderly and disabled individuals live independently, shared that there are over 5 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease according to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. Alzheimer’s disease is a very serious disorder that affects the brain functions associated with memory, language and mobility. It is also the common cause of Dementia, which is not a disease but the name used to describe the loss of a person’s cognitive developments.
Common Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease
The symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease may differ depending on the patient. The most common symptoms include:
- Memory loss of current events, people’s names, their faces and any recent information.
- Confusion about where you are or the time of day or time of year.
- Easily irritated or sudden mood changes.
- Unable to complete simple activities like bathing or brushing your teeth.
- Misplacing commonly used objects like keys, glasses etc.
As the disease progresses, one of the most dangerous symptoms involves wandering. The Alzheimer’s Association reports that six out of 10 people with Alzheimer’s will wander. These patients may wander because they can’t remember where they live. They may try to return to a home where they remember living previously, or they try to go to a job they may have had in the past. As a result of their memory loss or confusion about where they are, they can easily walk away from their safe and secure environment.
The Dangers of Wandering
Alzheimer’s patients wandering is a huge problem for their loved ones and caregivers. One reason is, wandering can happen at any time of the day or night. Whenever it happens, the danger is very real. Incidents are reported in news headlines regularly. In an Atlanta news report the headline reads “Search Continues for 69-Year-Old Atlanta Man with Dementia” and in New York another headline reads, “89-Year-Old Brooklyn Man Missing From Home: NYPD”. Stories like these leave families and caregivers constantly concerned about their loved ones with Alzheimer’s or Dementia wandering away. Although most of these patients are found safe, tragically that’s not always the end result!