Alzheimer’s is a deterioration of the brain causing memory loss and trouble with everyday tasks. There is no cure, but treatment can improve one’s quality of life for years.
Alzheimer’s disease develops over time and is an irreversible type of dementia that causes memory loss and difficulty with thinking skills and daily tasks, such as driving, cooking, and paying bills. Most commonly, the first symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease develop in people in their mid-60s which is typically considered late-onset Alzheimer’s. Early-onset Alzheimer’s can occur between the 30s and mid-60s and is much less common. Alzheimer’s disease is more than just the occasional forgetting and memory-lapse, but an actual deterioration of the brain. It is a fatal disease and affects each person differently.
Because Alzheimer’s disease primarily affects seniors over 65 years old, the rates are increasing as more and more Baby Boomers are continuing to age into that category. Experts approximate as many as 5.5 million Americans over 65 may currently have Alzheimer’s, but many more under 65 suffer as well. There are medications on the market that can help with symptoms such as memory loss and changes in language, thinking abilities and motor skills, but there is still no cure. Those who respond favorably to treatment can experience several years of improved quality of life.