Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative brain disorder that progressively destroys memory and cognitive abilities. It is the most common form of dementia, accounting for 60 to 80 percent of all cases.
The disease typically affects people over the age of 65, but it can occur in younger adults as well. Early-onset Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 5 percent of all cases and usually appears between the ages of 40 and 50 years old.
The 4 A’s of Alzheimer’s symptoms?
There are four main symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, which are often referred to as the “4 A’s.” These include amnesia, aphasia, apraxia, and agnosia.
Amnesia is the most well-known symptom of Alzheimer’s disease and refers to the memory loss that is characteristic of the condition.
Aphasia is another common symptom and refers to difficulty with communication and language. Apraxia refers to difficulties with movement and coordination, while agnosia refers to problems with recognizing objects or people.
These four symptoms can vary in severity from person to person, but they all contribute to the decline in cognitive function that is associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
Memory loss is usually the first symptom to develop, followed by other problems such as difficulty speaking or understanding speech, trouble reading or writing, and issues with motor skills. As the disease progresses, these symptoms become more severe, until eventually, a person becomes completely reliant on others for their care.
What age does Alzheimer’s disease affect the most?
The age at which symptoms first appear can vary widely. Early-onset Alzheimer’s disease refers to cases where symptoms develop before the age of 65. While this form of the disease is relatively rare, accounting for only 5-10% of all Alzheimer’s cases, it tends to progress more rapidly and be more severe than late-onset Alzheimer’s.
Some risk factors may increase one’s chances of developing early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. These include having a family history of the condition, carrying certain genes (e.g., APOE4), and experiencing head trauma or other neurological injuries.
Additionally, people with Down syndrome are at increased risk for early-onset Alzheimer’s due to an abnormal gene on chromosome 21 that predisposes them to the condition.
Things that trigger Alzheimer’s
There is no one answer to this question, as people experience Alzheimer’s differently. However, some common triggers can contribute to the onset of the disease. These include:
Family history: If you have a family member who has Alzheimer’s, you are more likely to develop the disease yourself.
Age: The risk of Alzheimer’s disease increases with age and is most common in people over 65 years old.
Gender: Women are slightly more likely than men to develop Alzheimer’s disease.
Diabetes: People with diabetes have an increased risk of developing dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.
High blood pressure: High blood pressure is a risk factor for many types of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.
Smoking: Cigarette smoking doubles your risk of developing dementia.
Is Alzheimer’s disease curable?
There is no known cure for Alzheimer’s, but there are treatments available to help slow the progression of the disease and improve the quality of life for patients and their caregivers. While there are no proven preventive measures or ability reverse the damage caused by Alzheimer’s, researchers are working hard to find a cure. In the meantime, patients and their families can take steps to manage the disease.
Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative brain disorder that leads to memory loss, impaired thinking, and eventually death.
As you age, it’s important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease so you can seek treatment as soon as possible, if necessary. Early diagnosis and treatment can improve your quality of life and extend your life expectancy.
If you have any concerns about your cognitive health, talk to your doctor about getting tested for Alzheimer’s disease.
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