Number of Alzheimer’s Cases Expected to Triple By 2050
Alzheimer’s disease is a growing concern. According to an analysis of data from the U.S. Census, the number of patients diagnosed with this debilitating medical condition is expected to triple by the year 2050. The report was published online earlier this year by researchers at the Rush Institute of Healthy Aging in the journal Neurology.
The number of people currently diagnosed is already alarming; the most recent figures show that in 2010 there were about 4.7 million adults ages 65 years and up with Alzheimer’s.
One of the key factors to the expected growth in the number of Alzheimer’s cases is the aging baby boom generation. This trend could place a significant burden on the nation’s healthcare system, and could result in millions of disabled individuals.
But these numbers may not necessarily account for those who develop symptoms before age 65 – this is known as early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, of the more than five million adults with this disease, about four percent are under the age of 65.
So while disability may be an issue for seniors, it could also become a problem for those still working, especially since many people who are diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease experience symptoms in their 40s and 50s.
Of course, the number of early-onset cases may not be accurate, as it’s not a common condition looked for in younger adults. In fact, symptoms may be dismissed as something else.
Although the signs can vary, the following are some of the issues that Alzheimer’s patients may experience:
- memory loss;
- inability to concentrate;
- mood/personality changes;
- difficulty completing daily tasks;
- trouble maintaining conversations;
- vision problems;
- misplacing items;
- poor judgment; and
- isolation and withdrawal.
No matter the individual’s age, when a condition such as Alzheimer’s disease leads to disability, Social Security disability benefits may be available. To learn about rights to benefits, contact the Disability Help Group