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Younger-Onset Alzheimer’s


During a recent talk I was giving to educate caregivers of persons suffering from Alzheimer’s I found this information provided by the Alzheimer’s Association to be very helpful and a solid reminder of the reach this disease can have. Sometimes we don’t stop to consider that the disease is not reserved for the well aged. In fact, Alzheimer’s disease is considered to be younger-onset Alzheimer’s if it affects a person under 65. Younger-onset can also be referred to as early-onset Alzheimer’s. People with younger-onset Alzheimer’s can be in the early, middle or late stage of the disease.

After a younger-onset diagnosis, individuals can live meaningful and productive lives. You still have much to contribute to the world. Living with younger-onset Alzheimer’s may mean you will be dealing with some life changes sooner than you had expected.

The majority of people with younger-onset have sporadic Alzheimer’s disease, which is the most common form of Alzheimer’s and is not attributed to genetics. Doctors do not understand why most cases of younger-onset Alzheimer’s appear at such a young age.

However, researchers know genetics play a role in Alzheimer’s. There are risk genes, which increase the likelihood of developing a disease, but do not guarantee it will happen. And there are deterministic genes that directly cause a disease, guaranteeing that anyone who inherits them will develop the disorder.
> Learn more about younger-onset Alzheimer’s
> Learn more about Alzheimer’s and genetics

Like many people with younger-onset Alzheimer’s, receiving an accurate diagnosis may have been difficult. Age or medical history can cause doctors to overlook or rule out Alzheimer’s disease. It’s also not uncommon to be told your symptoms may be related to stress, menopause or depression. This can lead to misdiagnosis (sometimes multiple times) and incorrect treatment. Learn more by visiting the Alzheimer’s Association website- they are a tremendous resource and help for families and loved ones dealing with the disease.

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