Get the Facts about Alzheimer's Disease & Dementia

Alzheimer's disease

Alzheimer's Timeline

According to the National Institute on Aging, "Alzheimer’s disease is an irreversible, progressive brain disease that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills, and eventually even the ability to carry out the simplest tasks."

In most people with Alzheimer’s, symptoms first appear after age 65. Estimates vary, but experts suggest that as many as 5 million Americans age 65 and older may have Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia among older people. 


Dementia

Dementia is the loss of thinking, memory, and reasoning skills to such an extent that it seriously affects a person's ability to carry out daily activities. Dementia is not a disease itself, but a group of symptoms caused by certain diseases or conditions such as Alzheimer's. People with dementia lose their mental abilities at different rates.

Symptoms may include:

  • Being unable to remember things
  • Asking the same question or repeating the same story over and over
  • Becoming lost in familiar places
  • Being unable to follow directions
  • Getting disoriented about time, people, and places
  • Neglecting personal safety, hygiene, and nutrition

Two of the most common forms of dementia in older people are Alzheimer's disease and vascular dementia. These types of dementia cannot be cured at present.


Resources

Caring for a Person with Alzheimer's Disease cover  Understanding Memory Loss cover

 Home safety brochure cover


Alzheimer's Caregiving Tips: Traveling Overnight. National Institute on Aging. 

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