1. Normal Aging Or Early Onset Alzheimers?
That is the question? Which is it? Is there a difference? What Is Early Onset Alzheimer’s and why is it different from Alzheimer’s? Is normal aging just normal memory slips of forgetfulness as we get older, or is it something else?
Well, let me tell you what the difference is? Why? Because knowledge is power and knowledge can help someone who has Early Onset on medications to slow down Alzheimer’s disease. So let’s discuss it.
Alzheimer’s brings fear to everyone who hears that word. Alzheimer’s is defined as symptoms of forgetfulness and dementia exhibited after the age of 65. But the symptoms can be displayed before the age of 65 and are then defined as Early Onset Alzheimer’s (EOA).
Well, I didn’t know much about it, but I knew that a number of my mother’s 12 brothers and sisters (she was number 13) had Alzheimer’s. At approximately age 56-57, I started to notice little glitches in my own memory. I didn’t think much about it, and just kept on moving, but definitely had a ‘thought’ in the back of my mind that ‘something’ wasn’t right. I worked as a consultant in Pharmaceutical companies with computer systems. My job was to ensure that FDA regulations were satisfied in Pharma computers used in clinical trials, and that computer systems met FDA regulations. With this job, I needed to stay on my ‘A-game.
The thing is most of my friends were all in the same age bracket and had very minor slips of memory too. As we sat around the kitchen table weekly on Sundays, there was always someone who had a memory glitch about something. If it was noticed, we shrugged it off. It was common among us and we’d just laugh it off. We all knew that there were many people our age that had slight memory glitches common to getting older.
2. What Raises Your Chances of Dementia With Alzheimer’s
As a child, I didn’t know what it was. It was a terrible degenerative brain disease that runs in families. It is a disease where dementia, in one way or another, rocks the lives of families for the remainder of our lives. Early Onset Alzheimer’s is defined as dementia in anyone under the age of 65. What causes it? Two items develop in our brain that identifies Alzheimer’s: Amoloyd plaque and Tau Tangles.
3. Early Onset Alzheimer’s Symptoms
As a group of elderly ‘young’ friends, if someone lost a thought, we’d laugh it off and keep on talking about whatever we were discussing. We never thought of Early Onset Alzheimer’s. If we had known more about this disease, we may have allowed ourselves to worry a bit. Well, I was aware, and it was a constant thought in my mind that I might be noticing some symptoms of slight forgetfulness and Early Alzheimers. Not often, but enough to give me pause. Enough for me to remember quite a few of my mother’s family members had Alzheimer’s. But no other friends seemed to notice. But my slight remembering at work still worried me. No one else noticed the minor memory issues, but I found it irritating as memory issues ever so slowly ‘slowed’ down my work. No one noticed but me. But, I felt I just wasn’t on my A-game. Tiredness, hard work, long hours, and forgetfulness can also make you feel this way.
4. That Uncomfortable Feeling. What Was Wrong With Me?
I had an uncomfortable feeling every day that I wasn’t doing ‘something’ right. Work was O.K., but too many times, I seemed to forget little things. Not things in the past, but short-term memory seemed out of wack!. Nothing that drew too much attention to my bosses and my co-workers, but enough for me at times, to feel uncomfortable and frustrated during my workday.
The doubt in my own mind made me go to various doctors to get medically checked. I was always afraid of going to the Neurologist to find out if there was anything wrong. But this daily process through life was so slow, no one noticed it but me. I thought often: Could it be Alzheimer’s? Even though Alzheimer’s runs in my family and being under the age of 65, my brain would take over and convince me that it was not Alzheimer’s. I’d shrug my shoulders, and think “just normal aging,” just like my other friends said, but deep inside I was petrified!
5. Knowing! A Good Thing Or A Bad Thing?
In all families, knowing Alzheimer’s runs in the family could be a good thing and a bad thing. It can give you ‘that same fear’ I felt with the knowledge that Alzheimer’s has a heredity factor. But I deemed it was better to know than not to know. Not being aware can cause us to continue to lose faith in ourselves in daily living, driving, working, or hanging out with friends and family. It can be too emotional for us to continue wondering and fear making critical and forgetful mistakes. So I had to know. After seeing so many doctors over a 5 year period, I was finally diagnosed. In the book, there is a chapter called My Diagnosis Journey‘ with an excerpt from my book, One More Thing, Before I Forget. You’ll understand quite clearly *if* there is the possibility of any of the symptoms within yourself, just from reading One More Thing, Before I Forget. Lastly, you will get some information on what to expect and what doctor to see if your suspect you or a loved one might have Early-onset ALZ.
6. Early Onset Alzheimer’s (EOA) – What’s Good To Know?
Early Onset Alzheimer’s (EOA) is defined when someone has ONE of the two components: amyloid plaque and tau tangles, that identifies full-blown Alzheimer’s and you’re under the age f 65. That’s what has happened to me. At the writing of this post, I have only the amyloid plaque. After going to a Neurologist you will learn what they are looking for to determine a diagnosis. Alzheimer’s is identified as Dementia caused by amyloid plaque and tau tangles in the brain interfering with connections within the brain (simple version).
A neurologist is ‘the’ doctor to see. ONE mORE tHING BEFORE I FORGET mentioned above talks about my Journey To Diagnosis because I knew nothing about this disease other than what I had seen in relatives. After receiving a diagnosis of Early Onset Alzheimer’s, this book provides ways to make your life easier and how to get by ‘living’ with the forgetfulness that comes with the disease.
7. Resources & Assistance To Live With Dementia
Follow these few links for additional information specific to help us live with dementia from Early Onset Alzheimers:
Heart Disease Can Cause Dimentia: https://www.webmd.com/alzheimers/ss/slideshow-raise-chances-dementia?ecd=wnl_gdh_030322&ctr=wnl-gdh-30322_lead_title&mb=Ck7B8Q2auFUd1O95ZZDfVadejwSkp2IJZeY9v0YYLuI%3D
8. How To Get Some Help.
This e-book, One More Thing Before I Forget, A Resource Guide For Early Onset provides information tools to help a person live with Early Onset Alzheimer’s with a little ease. The book discusses evaluation (how to get diagnosed when you experience memory issues), what doctor to see for diagnosis, education about the disease, and finally, tools, information, and assistance to live with this condition.
My book also has just plain old common sense on how to live comfortably for as long as we can. This book, ‘One More Thing Before I Forget, A Resource Guide for Early Onset Alzheimer’s provides a number of resources and things to do that can help anyone with Early Onset, regular Alzheimer’s, or other types of Dementia to get along easier in everyday life. Click the link on Amazon for the resource guide, ‘One More Thing Before I Forget, A Resource Guide for Early Onset A Alzheimer’s.’
This book is truly valuable for ANYONE with any form of Dementia, no matter if it’s Alzheimer’s or other conditions with Dementia. I use and share these tools as this helps make my life a little easier day-to-day. I’m sure you’ll find your life easier too and it will be of great value for you.
I’d love to get your feedback or comments on this post AND the book. Don’t give up hope. Many people are living with Dementia (from Early Onset Alzheimer’s, as well as, other conditions that affect memory.) I never knew there were other conditions/diseases that also exhibit dementia, as well as, groups of people just like us that we can communicate with people like us who can understand all that we go through.
Click the link to read, ease your heart, and meet others like us (yes us, myself included). It’s a wonderful thing to have others who clearly understand our lives.
Be Strong. Be Brave. Enjoy life as long as you can!