Alzheimer’s Disease is a brain disease that causes a slow decline in memory, thinking and reasoning skills. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than 5 million Americans are living with the disease
and it’s the sixth leading cause of death in the United States.
Below are 8 myths and realities about Alzheimer’s disease from the Alzheimer’s Association. Myth 1:
Memory loss is a natural part of aging.Reality:
As people age, it’s normal to have occasional memory problems, such as forgetting the name of a person you’ve recently met. However, Alzheimer’s is more than occasional memory loss; it’s when you forget the name of a longtime friend, or forget directions on how to get home to a place you have lived for a long time. Myth 2:
Alzheimer’s disease is not fatal.Reality:
Alzheimer’s disease has no survivors. It destroys brain cells and causes memory changes, erratic behaviors and loss of body functions. Myth 3:
Only older people can get Alzheimer’s.Reality:
While most people suffering from Alzheimer’s are 65 and older, the disease can strike people in their 30s, 40s and 50s. Myth 4:
Drinking out of aluminum cans or cooking in aluminum pots and pans can lead to Alzheimer’s disease.Reality:
During the 1960s and 1970s, aluminum emerged as a possible suspect in Alzheimer’s. Since then, studies have failed to confirm any role for aluminum in causing the disease. Myth 5:
Aspartame causes memory loss.Reality:
According to the FDA, as of May 2006, the agency had not been presented with any scientific evidence that would lead to change its conclusions on the safety of aspartame for most people. Myth 6:
Flu shots increase risk of Alzheimer’s disease.Reality:
Several mainstream studies link flu shots and other vaccinations to a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease and overall better health. Myth 7:
Silver dental fillings increase risk of Alzheimer’s disease.Reality:
According to the best available scientific evidence, there is no relationship between silver dental fillings and Alzheimer’s. Myth 8:
There are treatments available to stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.Reality:
At this time, there is no treatment to cure, delay or stop the progression of the disease. FDA-approved drugs can temporarily slow worsening of symptoms for about six to 12 months for about half the individuals who take them.
For more information on the myths and realities, click here.
To learn 10 Early Signs and Symptoms To Recognize Alzheimer’s Disease, click here.
To find out more about dementia, click here.
For more information about Alzheimer’s Disease, visit the Alzheimer’s Association website.
You can also call the 24-hour helpline from the Alzheimer’s Association at 1-800-272-3900.TELL DR. PHIL YOUR STORY: Life in crisis?