as a fairly new caregiver, I am reading a great deal about ALZ of course. I cant find a clear explanation of what criteria are used to determine the different stages, and what constitutes passing from one stage to the next. I read about late stage 2, etc., but dont know what that references. Any clarification or resources would be appreciated. And hugs to all of you! What a challenging heartbreaking road. thank you.
Hi Lee, the way I understand it isn't as a way to move from compartment to compartment but a general progression. There isn't any one 'moment' you will ever identify as changing stages. At best they are descriptions of approximate symptoms you may observe. Sometimes mixed between stages. Its just a tool that helps us to understand approximately where someone is on a continuum. Nothing is normal' with Alzheimers and symptoms are often unique to each person. Symptoms some get, others may not. And you may get all or only a few of the symptoms in each stage. In Australia, we use only three stages to identify changes. The USA uses seven. I've personally never bothered too much about stages but individual symptoms and how to handle each one. That has worked well for me.
I have experienced the changing phases. Angela has lost all emotional feelings, has become very selfish. Her personal hygiene has gone downhill as has her dress sense. There is no verbal interaction and when she does say something the sentence doesnt make sense. She has outbursts of anger, frustration and swearing. She goes to bed very early around 7.30 even when its bright and sunny outside. She is now at the stage where she is 'seeing' people who arent there. I recently bought a couple of badges for her which say on them "Please be pantient with me... I have dementia" so when we go to shops and restaurants people are aware of her condition. These badges also help me aswell because things can get quite frustrating for me too.
My mother was just admitted yesterday morning to the hospital for chest pains. I don't think it's anything serious but anything out of their normal surroundings we'll push them into a stage and I have witnessed this overnight. I have been with her all night and it has been a long one. Her confusion sleeping and memory have declined in 24 hours. This is so heartbreaking but I need to be strong. Sometimes you don't notice the movement of stages and other times they hit you like a ton of bricks. My prayers with you all
@A myALZteam Member I will keep you in my prayers. My husband recently died from Alzheimer's at age 75. He was diagnosed about 8-9 years ago. When he first learned of diagnosis, he would continually ask me how long he had, and I always told him, you have today. I know living with this disease is hard for you , but take each day and live it like it will be your last. Now is the time to get your affairs in order. Now is the time to let family and friends know how much they mean to you. Now is the time to do all that "stuff" on your "bucket list", take that trip or vacation, see that movie or play, make those amends. Now is the time to just enjoy everyday and relax. Late stage and end stage will arrive soon enough. As a critical nurse, I would always tell patient's and families facing difficult situations, we are born with no guarantees. Because I, personally, have never been sick ever and have always enjoyed almost perfect health, I have no guarantee that I will be alive tomorrow, so I thank God each and every day for all that I have been blessed with and try to make the best of it each day. God bless you and give you peace in these trying times.
I find the stages sort of blending together, with my husband, Roger, going back and forth. Over the past several months, I have noticed some serious decline, but then he will have moments of clarity. Everyone seems to progress at their own speed and time, and what fits for some, doesn't necessarily fit for others. I have stopped worrying about this stage or that. He is in late stage Alzheimer's period, and I deal with the symptoms and behaviors as they arrive.