Sometimes, this stage of Alzheimer's disease is only apparent in hindsight. At the time, it may be missed, or put down to old age or overwork. The onset of dementia is very gradual and it is often impossible to identify the exact time it began.
During the early phase of dementia, the person may:
- appear more apathetic, with less sparkle
- lose interest in hobbies or activities
- be less willing to try new things
- be less able to adapt to change
- be slower to grasp complex ideas and take longer with routine jobs
- become more forgetful of details of recent events
- become confused or disoriented to time and place
- become lost if away from familiar surroundings
- be more likely to repeat themselves or lose the thread of their conversation
- be more irritable or upset if they fail at something
- have difficulty managing finances
- have difficulty shopping or preparing meals.