If Alzheimer's disease is prevalent in your family, you may wish to learn as much about the condition as you can. Alzheimer's disease is a disorder of the brain that affects an individual's personality, thinking processes, and behavior. Although the disorder can be difficult to detect at times, there are some warning signs families can keep in mind. Learn more about Alzheimer's disease and how to know if you're predisposed to it below.
When Does Alzheimer's Disease Occur in Life?
Alzheimer's disease has the potential to occur early or later in life in some people. The majority of people who experience Alzheimer's disease generally do it after they turn 65 years of age. Individuals who develop Alzheimer's disease early in life typically do so before they turn 65. The symptoms of early-onset Alzheimer's disease usually manifest between 40 and 50 years of age.
The symptoms for early- and late-onset Alzheimer's disease can vary from person to person. However, memory loss is generally the most common symptom to manifest in both early and late Alzheimer's disease. People may forget where they place items, such as cell phones and keys. Some people may forget the faces and names of their friends and family members. The episodes of forgetfulness may be blamed on mid-life crises or old age, which can also affect memory.
The other symptoms of Alzheimer's disease may gradually sneak up on people. The individuals may increasingly become agitated or irritated with other people, or they may exhibit signs of aggressiveness during minor arguments and disagreements. The individual's aggressive behavior may baffle their friends and loved ones.
If you want to know if you're susceptible to Alzheimer's disease, visit a health clinic.
Can You Test for Alzheimer's Disease?
Although doctors can't "cure" Alzheimer's disease or stop it from happening, they can use special tests to help determine whether or not you're susceptible to the disorder. One of the tests used today is genetic testing.
Certain genes in your body may indicate whether or not you're at risk for Alzheimer's disease. Genetic tests look for unique DNA markers that run in families with Alzheimer's disease. The markers may pass from generation to generation over time. For example, if your mother or grandmother has Alzheimer's disease, you may have a higher risk factor for the disorder as well. The markers don't necessarily mean that you'll get Alzheimer's disease in your lifetime. So keep this information in mind when you visit a health clinic.
If your genetic tests reveal markers for Alzheimer's disease, a health clinic may be able to find ways to turn or switch off the markers. But this type of treatment may or may not be available as of yet.
Learn more about Alzheimer's disease, including whether or not you're at risk for it, by contacting a health clinic that offers APOE genetic services.