Dementia and Alzheimer’s

Signs & Symptoms

Caregivers see a variety of behaviors in memory-impaired individuals, ranging from mild behaviors, such as sleeplessness, to more severe ones, such as anger or aggression. In 2013, Harris Interactive, Inc. completed a study to report the frequency of observed behaviors by caregivers, summarized in the chart to the right.*

Many of these behaviors are reflected in the Alzheimer’s Association’s list of signs and symptoms below:**

  1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life. (e.g., forgetting important dates,
    asking for the same information over and over)
  2. Challenges in planning or solving problems (e.g., following a familiar
    recipe or keeping track of monthly bills)
  3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure (e.g., trouble driving to a familiar location, managing a budget at work or remembering the rules of a favorite game)
  4. Confusion with time or place
  5. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships (e.g., difficulty reading, judging distance and determining color or contrast)
  6. New problems with words in speaking or writing
  7. Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps
  8. Decreased or poor judgment
  9. Withdrawal from work or social activities
  10. Changes in mood and personality


*Chart provided with permission by Harris Interactive.

**Signs and symptoms provided by the Alzheimer’s Association,