Alzheimer’s is one of the most misunderstood diseases out there, and yet it is also one of the most deadly. Affecting nearly one in eight senior Americans, Alzheimer’s can’t be ignored or dismissed. There is a ton of information circulating about this disease and it becomes difficult to know what to believe and what to ignore. Get yourself up to speed by learning the truth behind these four Alzheimer’s myths.
Myth 1. “If I’m under 65, I don’t need to worry.”
While it’s true that Alzheimer’s mainly affects those over 65, it doesn’t mean that you are totally immune when younger. Nearly 200,000 Americans today have early-onset Alzheimer’s. But even if you escape the diagnosis, the condition can still affect you. Many of those in younger generations have to care for seniors who have been affected by dementia. Some of those family care-givers must give up careers, benefits, and time to help their relative with Alzheimer’s.
Myth 2. “If it doesn’t run in my family, I can’t get it.”
It’s true that there is an increased likelihood of getting Alzheimer’s if it runs in your family, but it doesn’t mean you’re off the hook if it doesn’t. What they are finding is that any brain can be affected.
Myth 3. “Men and women are equally likely to get the disease.”
With new research emerging, it has become clear that women are more susceptible to Alzheimer’s. Nearly one in six women over 65 have been diagnosed, compared to just one in eleven men. Women are also more likely to become caregivers to family members who have the disease.
Myth 4. “Unless I’m a doctor or scientist, there’s nothing I can do to fix the Alzheimer’s problem.”
We do need doctors and scientists to work on creating treatment and preventative medicine for Alzheimer’s disease. But for Alzheimer’s to become a priority in the medical community, we need to bring awareness to the condition. We can do this by educating and telling others about the effects of Alzheimer’s.
If you want to do more, find ways to directly help those you know who suffer from dementia and their caregivers. Offering to assist with errands, paying social visits, and even hiring a service to help with the care, such as Freedom Home Care, can lift the senior’s spirits and give the exhausted caregiver some much-needed time to themselves.
As our nation ages, we will be seeing Alzheimer’s diagnoses increase every year. It’s time to stop ignoring it and start educating ourselves and those around us. Only then will we see some real development and hope.
Freedom Home Care can help family caregivers get the break that they deserve. We offer help for individuals with Alzheimer’s. If you or someone you know could benefit from our specialized services, call us at 708-433-5788 for more information.