About Alzheimer's Disease
Round Rock Alzheimer's Care for Seniors / Elders
What Is Alzheimer's Disease?
Alzheimer’s disease is a brain disease that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills and, eventually, the ability to carry out the simplest tasks. It begins slowly and gets worse over time. Currently, it has no cure.
A Common Cause of Dementia
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia among older people. Dementia is a loss of thinking, remembering, and reasoning skills that interferes with a person’s daily life and activities. Dementia ranges in severity from the mild stage, when it is just beginning to affect a person’s functioning, to the severe stage, when the person must depend completely on others for basic care.
Estimates vary, but experts suggest that more than 5 million Americans may have Alzheimer's disease. Alzheimer’s is currently ranked as the sixth leading cause of death in the United States, but recent estimates indicate that the disorder may rank third, just behind heart disease and cancer, as a cause of death for older people.
Risk Increases With Age
In most people with Alzheimer’s, symptoms first appear in their mid-60s, and the risk of developing the disease increases with age. While younger people -- in their 30s, 40s, and 50s -- may get Alzheimer's disease, it is much less common. It is important to note that Alzheimer's disease is not a normal part of aging.
The course of Alzheimer’s disease—which symptoms appear and how quickly changes occur—varies from person to person. The time from diagnosis to death varies, too. It can be as little as 3 or 4 years if the person is over 80 years old when diagnosed or as long as 10 years or more if the person is younger.