Learning as much as possible about Alzheimer’s disease can help you spot early warning signs and provide proper care. Here are 11 important Alzheimer's facts all family caregivers need to know.
It's Becoming Increasingly Commonplace
Doctors make an Alzheimer's diagnosis every 66 seconds, and The Alzheimer’s Association reports that as many as 16 million Americans will have Alzheimer’s by the year 2050.
Alzheimer's is Not the Same as Dementia
There are many similarities between these two conditions, but there are also significant differences. Learn more.
There is No Cure
Alzheimer's is a progressive disease with no known cure. However, early intervention and treatment can slow the progression of this condition.
There are Millions of Family Caregivers
In the US alone, nearly 15 million family caregivers are currently providing unpaid care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia.
The Sandwich Generation is on the Rise
Four million Americans providing unpaid care for a senior with dementia or Alzheimer's are also caring for children under the age of 18.
Caregiver Stress is Very Common
Alzheimer’s caregivers experience a lot of stress and are more prone to physical health problems than caregivers tending to loved ones who do not have Alzheimer's or dementia.
Caregivers Have Support Options
There are many forms of professional assistance available to Alzheimer’s caregivers - including support groups, advocacy and research organizations, and affordable respite caregivers.
It's Possible to Manage Symptoms
There are prescription drugs available to help improve memory and slow the advance of Alzheimer’s. There are also medications for specific symptoms - like insomnia, and depression.
Healthy Living Helps
Medical experts agree that regular mental stimulation, exercise, and a healthy diet can sometimes slow the advance of Alzheimer’s disease.
Research is Improving Early Diagnosis
Medical professionals are working on developing new biomarkers that will allow them to diagnose this condition earlier - making it easier to treat patients.
Doctor Consistency is Important
Regularly seeing the same doctor can result in better treatment. With consistent care, your physician can quickly catch changes in mood and behavior, which enables early intervention.
An Alzheimer’s diagnosis is scary, but learning everything you can about the condition and working with doctors, respite caregivers, and support groups will help you give your loved one the best care possible.
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