In America 5.7 million people are living with Alzheimer’s. By 2050, this number could rise as high as 14 million.1
Healthcare has dramatically improved in the last several decades, resulting in an increase in the life span of the population. As we live longer, we are met with a new set of challenges.
Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, accounting for 60 to 80 percent of dementia cases. It is also an extremely costly disease with caregivers nation wide spending almost 8.5 billion hours and more than $230 billion caring for those affected.1 The greatest known risk factor for Alzheimer’s is increasing age; the majority of people with the disease today are 65 and older. However, every person is affected by Alzheimer’s differently. The disease may progress slowly and leave mental function intact for several years, or it may be aggressive and quickly rob people of their memories and livelihood. Either way, Alzheimer’s disease incites an overwhelming sense of hopelessness and despair for patients and loved ones as memories fade and therapy options are few.
Although current Alzheimer’s treatments cannot stop Alzheimer’s from progressing, some can temporarily slow the worsening of symptoms and improve quality of life in certain cases. But that is not enough. We want our parents, grandparents, families and friends to get older and age well, to not be burdened by the ravages of the disease, both emotional and economical, and to enjoy the later years of life as independently as possible.