Many people don’t know exactly what is Alzheimer’s disease, what are the symptoms, what is the cause of it, and why do people have it. In this blog, we will talk about some of the facts about this disease. If you are looking for answers, continue reading.
So, What Exactly is an Alzheimer’s Disease?
Alzheimer’s disease is a type of neurodegenerative disease or a brain disorder. This disease usually starts slowly and as it progresses it worsens. It decimates memory and thinking skills and, someday, even performing the simplest tasks will be an issue. In the mid-60s of age, late-onset symptoms will appear. In a very rare situation, the early onset of Alzheimer’s occurs between the age of 30 to 60. Around 60% to 70% of dementia cases are caused by Alzheimer’s among adults.
This disease is named after Dr. Alois Alzheimer. He studied the brain tissue of an elderly woman who had died and suffered an unusual mental illness. The symptom of this patient includes speech problems, unpredicted manners, and memory loss. After the patient died, Dr. Alois Alzheimer examined the brain and found many tangled bundles of fibers (neurofibrillary) and abnormal clumps (amyloid plaques).
In this day, these tangles and plaques inside the brain are considered some of the main features of Alzheimer’s disease. Lost of connections between nerve cells or neurons inside the brain is another feature of this disease. These neurons transmit data or messages between the different parts of our brains. Then from the brain, it sends data to the organs and muscles in our body. Also, numerous other complex brain changes are thought to play a part in Alzheimer’s.
Early Signs of Alzheimer’s In Aging Adults
One of the most common early symptoms is having difficulty remembering the most recent events that happened to them. And as this disease progress, some other symptoms may occur like problems with their language, being disoriented which they can easily get lost, mood swings, motivation is lost, self-neglect, and other behavioral issues.
What Is The Real Cause of Alzheimer’s Disease
As of today, scientists and doctors don’t know yet what is the real cause of Alzheimer’s in most individuals. It may include changes in the brain while we aged, and probably with genetic, environmental, and also lifestyle factors. But still, we should know that with the identified risks, the level of risks varies differ in each person.
We should know that this disease is a very progressive brain disease. It is characterized by the different changes inside our brains that may result in the loss of neurons and their connections. These changes affect a person’s ability to remember, think, and soon the ability to live independently.
The Connection between Aging and Alzheimer’s Risks
Age is the most known important factor for the disease, but older age causes Alzheimer’s? The answer is no. Older age doesn’t cause Alzheimer’s. Every 5 years, the count of individuals with Alzheimer’s has been doubled at the age of 65 and beyond. Did you know that one-third of individuals in the age of 85 and beyond may have this disease?
Doctors and scientists are studying how age-related changes in our brain may cause damage to neurons and affect different types of brain cells contributing to the disease. These changes may include the shrinking of certain parts of our brain (atrophy), inflammation, vascular damage, yielding of unstable molecules (free radicals), and deterioration of energy production within the cells. Age just only one factor of Alzheimer’s disease. There are a lot of people who live into their 90s or more without developing dementia.
Is Alzheimer’s Disease Hereditary?
Many individuals are worried about having or developing Alzheimer’s disease especially if one of the family members had it. Even though one of your family members has it, it doesn’t mean for sure that you’ll also have it. But there’s a chance that you may develop it.
The genes which have been inherited from their parents can affect how likely they will develop the disease. Genetic risk factors are changing or the differences in hereditary genes may influence the risk of getting Alzheimer’s. This risks factors are the reasons for other people to develop the disease since it runs in their families. There are two types of Alzheimer’s, early-onset and late-onset. Both of these types have a hereditary component.
Hopefully, we have tackled some of the questions that you have regarding Alzheimer’s. If by any chance, one of your members has it, make sure you’ll provide care and support to that person. They might forget you and the things that you had done for them. But we all know, that deep inside their hearts, you will be always be there.