Understanding the Stages of Alzheimer's Disease

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, you’re far from alone. Over 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s, and millions more have a family member or loved one living with it. While every stage of Alzheimer's is different and each situation is unique, expert guidance can start you on the way towards managing day-to-day life with Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer's patient accessing resources for managing their symptoms.
Alzheimer's patient accessing resources for managing their symptoms.
Alzheimer's patient accessing resources for managing their symptoms.

Helping Make Life with Alzheimer’s More Livable

UsAgainstAlzheimer’s provides resources to help people with Alzheimer’s and their loved ones understand the disease, enjoy a better quality of life, and undo negative misconceptions about the disease.

An older woman sitting on a couch with her doctor as they discuss the different stages of Alzheimer's Disease

Understanding the Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, knowing how to plan for the future starts with a better understanding of Alzheimer’s stages.

There are 5 distinct Alzheimer’s stages: Mild cognitive impairment (MCI), Mild, Moderate, Severe, and Very Severe. While symptoms will vary from person to person, there are common aspects for each stage of Alzheimer’s disease. The more you understand about each of them, the better prepared you and your loved ones can be.

An man in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease participates in a group class to help him stay active

Early Stages of Alzheimer’s

Early Alzheimer’s stages are an important time to take action towards better brain health. Recent studies have suggested that there are many lifestyle changes that can help manage and delay the onset of some symptoms. These early Alzheimer’s stages are also the best time to plan ahead for financial, medical, and legal needs.

A woman taking a break from her daily routine to swing on a swingset and enjoy the sunshine

Tips for Daily Life with Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s is different for each person. But millions of people and families are going through the same kinds of changes and problems. Find tips for living with Alzheimer’s for yourself or a loved one.

Two scientists working on Alzheimer's research stand at a whiteboard and review data together

Research & Clinical Trials

A clinical trial provides the research needed to test new medicines, diagnostics, care, or risk reduction programs. If you or your loved one joins a clinical trial, you may get access to new therapies and the latest research. These trials also help move us all towards better understanding of the disease, leading to improved care and treatment.

There are many factors to consider when participating in Alzheimer’s research, it’s important to find the project that is best for you.

A doctor sits down for coffee with an older couple to discuss how they are breaking down the stigma around Alzheimer's

Breaking Down the Stigma

It’s not uncommon for someone diagnosed with Alzheimer’s to feel like they’re being treated differently by people around them. That’s why changing perceptions and educating others on the facts about Alzheimer’s is so important. Sharing your experience can not only help reduce the stigma, but help bring about more support, no matter what stage of Alzheimer’s you or your loved one are experiencing.

A woman is sitting and looking off into the distance thinking

Agitation in Alzheimer’s

Agitation is a common symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. It may cause people to become aggressive, anxious, restless, or irritable. If you are caring for someone who becomes agitated, remember that it’s a symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. Follow some tips and remember to stay calm, acknowledge their feelings, and know that it is not your fault.

How do People Progress Through the Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease?

Each person goes through Alzheimer’s stages at a different speed, with different symptoms. While each person is unique, one consistent fact is that you will need more help as you progress through each stage of Alzheimer’s disease. Recognizing symptoms of each stage can help you navigate changes and plan for the future.

With MCI and the mild stage of Alzheimer’s disease, you may not need that much help with day-to-day life. You may repeat questions or take longer to do daily activities, and may have difficulty learning new information.

In the moderate stage, you may need more help with daily activities. Over time, you might need help getting dressed, bathing, and going to the bathroom. You could also start having trouble sleeping.

In the severe and very severe stages, you will likely need continuous care and will need help with most activities of everyday life.

While these topics can be tough, it’s important to remember that you are not alone. Millions of Americans are affected by Alzheimer’s and dementia, and there are many local and national resources to help you enjoy a better quality of life.

An older woman sitting on a couch with her doctor as they discuss the different stages of Alzheimer's Disease

Understanding the Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, knowing how to plan for the future starts with a better understanding of Alzheimer’s stages.

There are 5 distinct Alzheimer’s stages: Mild cognitive impairment (MCI), Mild, Moderate, Severe, and Very Severe. While symptoms will vary from person to person, there are common aspects for each stage of Alzheimer’s disease. The more you understand about each of them, the better prepared you and your loved ones can be.

An man in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease participates in a group class to help him stay active

Early Stages of Alzheimer’s

Early Alzheimer’s stages are an important time to take action towards better brain health. Recent studies have suggested that there are many lifestyle changes that can help manage and delay the onset of some symptoms. These early Alzheimer’s stages are also the best time to plan ahead for financial, medical, and legal needs.

A woman taking a break from her daily routine to swing on a swingset and enjoy the sunshine

Tips for Daily Life with Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s is different for each person. But millions of people and families are going through the same kinds of changes and problems. Find tips for living with Alzheimer’s for yourself or a loved one.

Two scientists working on Alzheimer's research stand at a whiteboard and review data together

Research & Clinical Trials

A clinical trial provides the research needed to test new medicines, diagnostics, care, or risk reduction programs. If you or your loved one joins a clinical trial, you may get access to new therapies and the latest research. These trials also help move us all towards better understanding of the disease, leading to improved care and treatment.

There are many factors to consider when participating in Alzheimer’s research, it’s important to find the project that is best for you.

A doctor sits down for coffee with an older couple to discuss how they are breaking down the stigma around Alzheimer's

Breaking Down the Stigma

It’s not uncommon for someone diagnosed with Alzheimer’s to feel like they’re being treated differently by people around them. That’s why changing perceptions and educating others on the facts about Alzheimer’s is so important. Sharing your experience can not only help reduce the stigma, but help bring about more support, no matter what stage of Alzheimer’s you or your loved one are experiencing.

A woman is sitting and looking off into the distance thinking

Agitation in Alzheimer’s

Agitation is a common symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. It may cause people to become aggressive, anxious, restless, or irritable. If you are caring for someone who becomes agitated, remember that it’s a symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. Follow some tips and remember to stay calm, acknowledge their feelings, and know that it is not your fault.

How do People Progress Through the Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease?

Each person goes through Alzheimer’s stages at a different speed, with different symptoms. While each person is unique, one consistent fact is that you will need more help as you progress through each stage of Alzheimer’s disease. Recognizing symptoms of each stage can help you navigate changes and plan for the future.

With MCI and the mild stage of Alzheimer’s disease, you may not need that much help with day-to-day life. You may repeat questions or take longer to do daily activities, and may have difficulty learning new information.

In the moderate stage, you may need more help with daily activities. Over time, you might need help getting dressed, bathing, and going to the bathroom. You could also start having trouble sleeping.

In the severe and very severe stages, you will likely need continuous care and will need help with most activities of everyday life.

While these topics can be tough, it’s important to remember that you are not alone. Millions of Americans are affected by Alzheimer’s and dementia, and there are many local and national resources to help you enjoy a better quality of life.

No Matter Your Stage of Alzheimer’s, There Are Resources for You:

Learn to manage the adjustments that are part of living with Alzheimer’s with reliable information from trusted sources.

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