Growing Numbers Of People With Alzheimers In The Us
About 6.2 million people in the United States are living with Alzheimers disease. Of the total U.S. population, more than 1 in 9 people age 65 and older has Alzheimers. The percentage of people with Alzheimers increases with age: 5.3% of people ages 65 to 74, 13.8% of people ages 75 to 84, and 34.6% of people 85 and older.
One In 7 Americans Over Age 70 Has Dementia
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ANN ARBOROne in seven Americans over the age of 70 suffers from dementia, according to the first known nationally representative, population-based study to include men and women from all regions of the country.
About 3.4 million people, or 13.9 percent of the population age 71 and older, have some form of dementia, the study found. As expected, the prevalence of dementia increased dramatically with age, from five percent of those aged 71 to 79 to 37.4 percent of those age 90 and older.
About 2.4 million of those with dementia, or 9.7 percent of the population age 71 and older, were found to have Alzheimers disease, the most common cause of dementia, according to the study.
These conditions affect millions of older Americans and touch nearly every family in some way, and the situation is only going to get worse as the population ages, said Duke University researcher Brenda Plassman, the lead author of the journal article.
These data about dementia are linked to an enormous wealth of economic, health, psychological, and other information about these same individuals and their families over time, said Richard Suzman, director of the Behavioral and Social Research Program at the National Institute on Aging. We can now track the impact and costs of dementia on society, the economy, and families in ways we never could before.
To read the National Institute on Aging news release on this study: www.nia.nih.gov/ResearchInformation/HRS.htm.
Studies Should Focus On Oldest Old
Bondi adds that the findings underscore the importance of considering age when testing for Alzheimerâs.
Boston University associate professor of neurology Rhoda Au, PhD, says understanding differences in mental declines as they relate to age will become even more important as better treatments for Alzheimerâs disease emerge.
She adds that because people in their 80s and older have traditionally been excluded from clinical trials, it is not surprising that differences between the older old and the younger old are only now being recognized.
In an editorial published with the study, Au notes that given the aging of the population, researchers must increase their efforts to improve diagnosis, care, and treatment of the oldest old.
âIt is clear that the oldest old are different, and that some of the assumptions that we make in younger patients may not apply to these people,â Au tells WebMD.
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Preventing Alzheimer’s In A Growing Senior Population
As the population of the United States ages, Alzheimer’s is becoming a more common cause of death. It is the 6th leading cause of death in the U.S. overall and the 5th leading cause among elderly. The elderly population is anticipated to make up 20% of the overall population by 2030 hence, the growing number of diagnoses in the country. Among people age 70, 61% of those with Alzheimer’s are expected to die before the age of 80. For people without Alzheimer’s, only 30% are expected to die before 80.
Although the statistics are alarming and there is no known cure for Alzheimer’s disease yet, there are things many experts believe you can do to lower the risks of development.
Struggling To Adapt To Change
For someone in the early stages of dementia, the experience can cause fear. Suddenly, they cant remember people they know or follow what others are saying. They cant remember why they went to the store, and they get lost on the way home.
Because of this, they might crave routine and be afraid to try new experiences. Difficulty adapting to change is also a typical symptom of early dementia.
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Alzheimer’s Society’s View On Demography
The number of people with dementia is steadily increasing. We believe that careful planning is needed.
Alzheimer’s Society believes that careful planning for the future is needed now to ensure that the right care and support is available.
The report, Projections of older people with dementia and costs of dementia care in the United Kingdom, 2019-2040 , provides the most up-to-date evaluation of the numbers of people with dementia in the UK, projections on numbers of people in the future and the prevalence of dementia.
This research was conducted by the Care Policy and Evaluation Centre at the London School of Economics and Political Science on behalf of Alzheimers Society.
Overview Of Alzheimers Disease
Alzheimers disease is a type of brain disease, just as coronary artery disease is a type of heart disease. It is also a degenerative disease, meaning that it becomes worse with time. Alzheimers disease is thought to begin 20 years or more before symptoms arise,- with changes in the brain that are unnoticeable to the person affected. Only after years of brain changes do individuals experience noticeable symptoms such as memory loss and language problems. Symptoms occur because nerve cells in parts of the brain involved in thinking, learning and memory have been damaged or destroyed. As the disease progresses, neurons in other parts of the brain are damaged or destroyed. Eventually, nerve cells in parts of the brain that enable a person to carry out basic bodily functions, such as walking and swallowing, are affected. Individuals become bed-bound and require around-the-clock care. Alzheimers disease is ultimately fatal.
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Brain Changes Associated With Alzheimer’s Disease
A healthy adult brain has about 100 billion neurons, each with long, branching extensions. These extensions enable individual neurons to form connections with other neurons. At such connections, called synapses, information flows in tiny bursts of chemicals that are released by one neuron and detected by another neuron. The brain contains about 100 trillion synapses. They allow signals to travel rapidly through the brain’s neuronal circuits, creating the cellular basis of memories, thoughts, sensations, emotions, movements and skills.
The accumulation of the protein fragment beta-amyloid outside neurons and the accumulation of an abnormal form of the protein tau inside neurons are two of several brain changes associated with Alzheimer’s.
Plaques and smaller accumulations of beta-amyloid called oligomers may contribute to the damage and death of neurons by interfering with neuron-to-neuron communication at synapses. Tau tangles block the transport of nutrients and other essential molecules inside neurons. Although the complete sequence of events is unclear, beta-amyloid may begin accumulating before abnormal tau, and increasing beta-amyloid accumulation is associated with subsequent increases in tau.,
Quick Alzheimers Facts Within The United States
To display just how severe this condition is in terms of illnesses throughout the United States, here are some quick facts that truly display this disease which is growing in terms of its prevalence.
- Within the senior population, one out of every three individuals suffers from Alzheimers or another form of dementia.
- In the United States, Alzheimers is the sixth-leading cause of death.
- Of those directly affected by Alzheimers, two-thirds are women.
- In comparison to cancer, where 90 percent of individuals become aware of their diagnosis, only 45 percent of people with Alzheimers are told about their diagnosis.
- In 2015, Alzheimers and other forms of dementia will cost the United States $226 billion. This value is expected to increase to $1.1 trillion by 2050.
- In the United States, someone develops Alzheimers every 67 seconds.
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Risk Factors And Prevention
Although age is the strongest known risk factor for dementia, it is not an inevitable consequence of biological ageing. Further, dementia does not exclusively affect older people young onset dementia accounts for up to 9% of cases. Studies show that people can reduce their risk of cognitive decline and dementia by being physically active, not smoking, avoiding harmful use of alcohol, controlling their weight, eating a healthy diet, and maintaining healthy blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Additional risk factors include depression, social isolation, low educational attainment, cognitive inactivity and air pollution.
What Are The Warning Signs Of Alzheimers Disease
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Alzheimers disease is not a normal part of aging. Memory problems are typically one of the first warning signs of Alzheimers disease and related dementias.
In addition to memory problems, someone with symptoms of Alzheimers disease may experience one or more of the following:
- Memory loss that disrupts daily life, such as getting lost in a familiar place or repeating questions.
- Trouble handling money and paying bills.
- Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure.
- Misplacing things and being unable to retrace steps to find them.
- Changes in mood, personality, or behavior.
Even if you or someone you know has several or even most of these signs, it doesnt mean its Alzheimers disease. Know the 10 warning signs .
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How Dementia Affects People Worldwide
Of the 47.5 million people living with dementia, approximately 58 percent are living within low and middle-income countries. The rates of this syndrome are expected to continually rise, with estimates as high as 75.6 million cases by 2030 and a shocking 135.5 million by 2050.
A recent meta-analysis reported that the global prevalence of dementia is somewhere between 5 and 7 percent within people aged 60 or over. By the age of 85 years and older, between 25 and 50 percent of people display symptoms of dementia, more specifically Alzheimers.
How Alzheimer’s Disease Is Treated
There’s currently no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, but medicines are available that can help relieve some of the symptoms.
Various other types of support are also available to help people with Alzheimer’s live as independently as possible, such as making changes to your home environment so it’s easier to move around and remember daily tasks.
Psychological treatments such as cognitive stimulation therapy may also be offered to help support your memory, problem solving skills and language ability.
Read more about treating Alzheimer’s disease.
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How To Learn More About Dementia Including Alzheimer’s Disease In Canada:
- Canada.ca and Search “Dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, in Canada”
Box 1: What’s in the data?
Each data source has strengths and limitations. As such, dementia estimates vary among population-based studies, depending on factors like the definition of dementia, type of data, and methodology used. The data used in this publication are from the Canadian Chronic Disease Surveillance System , a collaborative network of provincial and territorial chronic disease surveillance systems, led by the Public Health Agency of Canada . The CCDSS identifies chronic disease cases from provincial and territorial administrative health databases, including physician billing claims and hospital discharge abstract records, linked to provincial and territorial health insurance registry records using a unique personal identifier. Data on all residents eligible for provincial or territorial health insurance are captured in the health insurance registries. Data on diagnosed dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, from Saskatchewan are not included in the CCDSS due to a different utilisation pattern of the International Classification of Diseases codes that would lead to an underestimation of incidence and prevalence in that province.
Definition of diagnosed dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, in the CCDSS
Use And Costs Of Health Care And Long
Among Medicare beneficiaries with Alzheimer’s or other dementias, black/African Americans had the highest Medicare payments per person per year, while whites had the lowest payments . The largest difference in payments was for hospital care, with black/African Americans incurring 1.7 times as much in hospital care costs as whites .
- Created from unpublished data from the National 5% Sample Medicare Fee-for-Service Beneficiaries for 2014.
In a study of Medicaid beneficiaries with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s dementia that included both Medicaid and Medicare claims data, researchers found significant differences in the costs of care by race/ethnicity. These results demonstrated that black/African Americans had significantly higher costs of care than whites or Hispanics/Latinos, primarily due to more inpatient care and more comorbidities. These differences may be attributable to later-stage diagnosis, which may lead to higher levels of disability while receiving care delays in accessing timely primary care lack of care coordination duplication of services across providers or inequities in access to care. However, more research is needed to understand the reasons for this health care disparity.
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Analyses Of Disability Aging And Long
This report was prepared under contract #HHSP233201600021I between the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services , Office of Disability, Aging and Long-Term Care Policy and RTI International. For additional information about this subject, you can visit the DALTCP home page at or contact the ASPE Project Officer, Helen Lamont, at HHS/ASPE/DALTCP, Room 424E, H.H. Humphrey Building, 200 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20201. Her e-mail address is: .
Who Is Affected By Dementia
Dementia mainly affects people over the age of 65, though dementia can affect younger people too.
Our new figures, announced in December 2021, are based on the number of people with dementia over 65 only. This is because there is very little research and data on the estimated numbers of people with dementia under 65. There is an urgent need for more research to be carried out in this area.
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Signs And Symptoms Of Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive condition, which means the symptoms develop gradually over many years and eventually become more severe. It affects multiple brain functions.
The first sign of Alzheimer’s disease is usually minor memory problems.
For example, this could be forgetting about recent conversations or events, and forgetting the names of places and objects.
As the condition develops, memory problems become more severe and further symptoms can develop, such as:
- confusion, disorientation and getting lost in familiar places
- difficulty planning or making decisions
- problems with speech and language
- problems moving around without assistance or performing self-care tasks
- personality changes, such as becoming aggressive, demanding and suspicious of others
- hallucinations and delusions
- low mood or anxiety
Read more about the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.
Treatment Of Alzheimer’s Dementia
2.5.1 Pharmacologic treatment
None of the pharmacologic treatments available today for Alzheimer’s dementia slow or stop the damage and destruction of neurons that cause Alzheimer’s symptoms and make the disease fatal. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved five drugs for the treatment of Alzheimer’s â rivastigmine, galantamine, donepezil, memantine, and memantine combined with donepezil. With the exception of memantine, these drugs temporarily improve cognitive symptoms by increasing the amount of chemicals called neurotransmitters in the brain. Memantine blocks certain receptors in the brain from excess stimulation that can damage nerve cells. The effectiveness of these drugs varies from person to person and is limited in duration.
Many factors contribute to the difficulty of developing effective treatments for Alzheimer’s. These factors include the slow pace of recruiting sufficient numbers of participants and sufficiently diverse participants to clinical studies, gaps in knowledge about the precise molecular changes and biological processes in the brain that cause Alzheimer’s disease, and the relatively long time needed to observe whether an investigational treatment affects disease progression.
2.5.2 Non-pharmacologic therapy
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Numbers Of People With Dementia
Someone in the world develops dementia every 3 seconds. There are over 55 million people worldwide living with dementia in 2020. This number will almost double every 20 years, reaching 78 million in 2030 and 139 million in 2050. Much of the increase will be in developing countries. Already 60% of people with dementia live in low and middle income countries, but by 2050 this will rise to 71%. The fastest growth in the elderly population is taking place in China, India, and their south Asian and western Pacific neighbours.
Demographic ageing is a worldwide process that shows the successes of improved health care over the last century. Many are now living longer and healthier lives and so the world population has a greater proportion of older people. Dementia mainly affects older people, although there is a growing awareness of cases that start before the age of 65.
There are over 10 million new cases of dementia each year worldwide, implying one new case every 3.2 seconds.
What Is The Impact Of Coronavirus On The Number Of People Living With Dementia
During the pandemic we have sadly seen a high number of deaths of people with dementia higher than would have been expected in a normal year.
These deaths are either a direct result from COVID-19, or from the impact of lockdown on the progression of dementia symptoms. In our report, Worst hit: dementia during coronavirus, we shined a light on the impact of coronavirus on people with dementia and those who care for them.
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Risk Factors For Alzheimers Dementia
The vast majority of people who develop Alzheimers dementia are age 65 or older. This is called late-onset Alzheimers. Experts believe that Alzheimers, like other common chronic diseases, develops as a result of multiple factors rather than a single cause. Exceptions are cases of Alzheimers related to uncommon genetic changes that increase risk.
2.7.1 Age, genetics and family history
The greatest risk factors for late-onset Alzheimers are older age,, genetics, and having a family history of Alzheimers.-
Age is the greatest of these three risk factors. As noted in the Prevalence section, the percentage of people with Alzheimers dementia increases dramatically with age: 3% of people age 65-74, 17% of people age 75-84 and 32% of people age 85 or older have Alzheimers dementia. It is important to note that Alzheimers dementia is not a normal part of aging, and older age alone is not sufficient to cause Alzheimers dementia.
- One in 10 people age 65 and older has Alzheimers dementia.,,
- The percentage of people with Alzheimers dementia increases with age: 3% of people age 65-74, 17% of people age 75-84, and 32% of people age 85 and older have Alzheimers dementia. People younger than 65 can also develop Alzheimers dementia, but it is much less common and prevalence is uncertain.
3.1.1 Underdiagnosis of Alzheimers and other dementias in the primary care setting
3.1.2 Prevalence of subjective cognitive decline