June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. There are more than 5.5 million people in the world who are over 65 and have Alzheimer’s disease. Every 3 seconds someone else in the world develops some form of dementia. There are now more than 50 million people worldwide living with dementia. This number is expected to double every 20 years.
Facts About Alzheimer’s Disease
- Alzheimer’s is the 6th leading cause of death in the U.S. Almost 17 million Americans are currently providing unpaid for care to one or more patients with Alzheimer’s or some other form of brain disease.
- Every 65 seconds someone else in the U.S. develops Alzheimer’s.
- Almost two thirds of Americans with Alzheimer’s are women.
Alzheimer’s is only one type of brain disease or dementia. Dementia is a term used for loss of memory and other mental abilities. It must be so severe that it interferes with living a normal life. Dementias are caused by changes in the brain.
Some other forms of dementia include:
- Vascular dementia
- Mixed dementia
- Parkinsons’s disease
- Frontotemporal disease
- Huntington’s disease
- Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of dementia, accounting for up to 80% of all cases. Early symptoms can include difficulty remembering recent conversations, names and events. Alzheimer’s is not a normal part of aging. As the disease progresses later symptoms are usually disorientation, lack of judgement, confusion, inability to communicate and changes in behaviour. This can progress to difficulty walking, speaking and swallowing.
Deaths from other causes have decreased, however, deaths from Alzheimer’s disease have increased significantly. In the past 15 years, deaths from Alzheimer’s have increased by more than 120%. This has placed a huge burden on the health care system as annual costs are more than a quarter of a trillion dollars. Click here to read more about Alzheimer’s and to take action. Help spread the word about the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.