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5 Conditions Often Misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s

By , 8:52 pm on

Alzheimer’s is one of the most common medical conditions in seniors. However, some ailments are often mistaken for Alzheimer’s. West Bloomfield senior care experts discuss 5 conditions commonly misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s. 

1. Pneumonia 

If your senior loved one has pneumonia, it can slow down his or her cognitive function. Your loved one’s brain may not be able to function properly until the infection is treated properly. However, this reversible condition is commonly misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s due to the cognitive impairment it causes. You can learn all of the symptoms associated with pneumonia to prevent such a misdiagnosis. 

2. Sleep Apnea 

Sleep apnea is often characterized by abnormal stops in a person’s breathing while sleeping. As a result, the person will suddenly wake up to restore his or her breathing. This can happen throughout the night, even if a person is unaware it exists. Sleep apnea can impair your loved one’s cognitive function and memory, which is why the condition is often misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s. Regular screenings can prevent this from happening. 

3. Depression 

As seniors age, they may feel lonely due to retirement, the loss of a spouse or a loved one, medical conditions, or a variety of other reasons. Loneliness can turn into depression, a mental disorder that causes mood swings, and can last for more than a couple of weeks. These changes in a senior’s mood are often misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s disease, when it is actually depression, which is a reversible medical condition. To reduce the risk of misdiagnosis, keep your senior loved one socially active to prevent depression.

4. Dehydration 

When aging adults do not have enough fluids in their blood vessels, their bodies will not be able to maintain normal functions. Over time, this type of fluid deficit can cause cognitive decline in your loved one. Memory impairment due to dehydration can be mistaken for Alzheimer’s, so make sure your senior loved one stays hydrated.. 

5. Alcoholism 

Excessive alcohol drinking may lead to impaired thinking, including memory loss and attention disorientation. This is why alcoholism is often misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s. To prevent this from happening, and to ensure your senior loved one remains healthy, encourage him or her to stop drinking.

When it comes to Alzheimer’s care, West Bloomfield families rely on Home Care Assistance for their senior loved ones. We use our trademark Balanced Care Method and Cognitive Therapeutics Method to help aging adults with Alzheimer’s retain their memory. To learn more about these methods and how they can benefit your loved one, get in touch with one of our Care Managers today at 248.283.0835.