Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia, is a serious condition that currently affects about five million Americans. By 2050, the Alzheimer’s Association projects that number to be as high as 16 million. Alzheimer’s disease is currently not curable and the causes remain somewhat complex. If a family member has this condition, you may be confused about what the diagnosis means.
At West Hartford Health & Rehabilitation Center, we have a state-of-the-art facility dedicated to dementia care, where we also educate families about the disease. During this difficult time, you can count on our trained and certified staff to keep your loved one safe from harm.
What are some of the common myths you should know about Alzheimer’s disease?
1. Dementia & Alzheimer’s Are the Same
Dementia is the overall term used to describe symptoms of memory loss and impairment. There are several types, including Lewy Body Dementia and Parkinson’s disease. As it is the most common type of dementia, someone develops Alzheimer’s every 66 seconds.
2. Alzheimer’s Is Part of Aging
Alzheimer’s disease is certainly not inevitable in seniors. While many of us occasionally forget where we put the car keys or to buy milk on the way home, the effects of Alzheimer’s are more serious. Those afflicted by the disease are more than slightly forgetful. When you have trouble remembering your own children, that’s not a natural symptom of aging.
3. Young People Cannot Be Affected
People as young as 30 can suffer from Alzheimer’s disease! Called early onset Alzheimer’s, this form is often the result of genetics. However, the number of people between the ages of 30 and 50 with the disease is much lower than the 65+ age group. Only about five percent of people who develop symptoms of Alzheimer’s are under the age of 65.
4. Alzheimer’s Disease Is Not Fatal
Unfortunately, Alzheimer’s can prove to be a deadly disease for some seniors. The behaviors associated with the condition can put them at risk to develop other health conditions. As the sixth leading cause of death, Alzheimer’s disease leads to more fatalities than breast and prostate cancer combined. It’s estimated that one in three seniors will die from the disease.
5. There Is Effective Treatment
Sadly, while there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease at this time, there is also no reliable treatment. There are no FDA-approved drugs to reverse the effects or supplements to prevent the symptoms. Additionally, there are no proven diet changes one can make to stop the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimer’s is a life-changing and life-threatening disease that affects many seniors. If your loved one is suffering, contact West Hartford Health & Rehabilitation Center to schedule a tour of our dementia neighborhood today.
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