Alzheimer's disease typically progresses slowly in three general stages, mild (early-stage), moderate (middle-stage), and severe (late-stage). Since Alzheimer's affects people in different ways, each person will experience symptoms or progress through Alzheimer's stages differently. The symptoms of Alzheimer's disease worsen over time, although the rate at which the disease progresses varies. On average, a person with Alzheimer's lives four to eight years after diagnosis but can live as long as 20 years, depending on other factors. Alzheimer's disease typically follows certain stages which will bring about changes in the person's and family's lives. Because the disease affects each individual differently, the symptoms, the order in which they appear, and the duration of each stage vary from person to person. In most cases, the disease progresses slowly, and the symptoms of each stage may overlap, often making the move from one stage to another quite subtle. When a person is in the later stages of dementia they are likely to be much frailer. They will probably rely on others for much of their care. The later stages can be hard to define and everyone will go through them in their own way.