The Effect of Alzheimer's on Elders

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Imagine a life where one does not recognize his family or friends. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia. It is an escalating disease that damages mental function and memory. Symptoms of the disease usually begin slowly and worsen over time, interfering with daily tasks and one’s lifestyle. Alzheimer’s is the third leading cause of death. It has become “a significant health problem in the last twenty five years because of increasing life spans and the scientific recognition that significant memory loss is not a normal part of aging” (Akbar 8). Although there is no current cure, treatments are available for the symptoms of this disease. The progressive effect of Alzheimer’s on elders is catastrophic and disables elders from living normal lives. This disease shows interesting data. “Five percent of the population over age sixty-five is affected. The incidence rises with increasing age, so that at least fifteen to twenty percent of individuals in their eighties are affected” (Akbar 9). The Alzheimer’s Association showed that every sixty-seven seconds someone in the United States develops Alzheimer’s disease. Currently, about five million Americans are diagnosed with this disease. Often times, it is in elders who begin to show signs around the age of sixty. Approximately 500,000 people each year die due to Alzheimer’s. According to researchers, one in three elders dies with Alzheimer’s disease. Furthermore, women have a greater chance of developing this disease because women live longer and lose function in the mitochondria. In fact, two-thir... ... middle of paper ...>. Editorial Staff. “Variant of TREM2 Associated with the Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease.” The New England Journal of Medicine 10 Jan. 2013 Fairfield, Hannah. “For the Elderly, Diseases That Overlap.” The New York Times 15 Apr. 2013 Firth, Shannon. “Blood Test for Alzheimer’s Disease.” U.S. News and World Report 10 Mar. 2014 Glass, Jon. “Managing Unpredictable Behavior in People with Alzheimer’s Disease.” 13 Mar. 2012. WebMD, LLC. 18 Mar. 2014