Alzheimer’s is a commonly misunderstood disease. It affects many people and their families each year, but there are many misinterpretations and myths associated with the disease. There are five common myths associated with Alzheimer’s and dispelling the myths can help many individuals find better treatment for the disease. The first myth involves memory loss and the aging process. Many people believe that memory loss is a natural part of aging, and some believe Alzheimer’s is also a natural part of aging. However, Alzheimer’s is not a part of aging; it is a serious disease that does not affect every elderly person. Severe memory loss is recognized as a symptom of serious illness. It has never been proven that age causes memory loss, but many individuals will admit that their memories decline as they grow older. If an aging person experiences excessive memory loss, it should not be passed over as a normal part of aging.
If an elderly person forgets simple and common things, then they may be showing clear signs of Alzheimer’s disease. The second common myth about Alzheimer’s disease is that the disease is not fatal. However, many people should know that Alzheimer’s is a fatal disease. Victims of Alzheimer’s may live for 3 to 20 years, but the disease is fatal for all victims. The disease begins with the destruction of cells in regions of the brain that are important for memory and thinking functions. Eventually, the loss of cells in other regions of the brain will occur, and will lead to the failure of essential systems in the body. The disease will also eventually cause the complete loss of all brain functions. If a person with Alzheimer’s has no other serious diseases, then the disease will be the single factor in the death of an individual.
The third myth about Alzheimer’s is that drinking from aluminum cans or cooking with aluminum pots and pans can lead to the disease. Disposing of aluminum products will not protect anyone from getting the Alzheimer’s disease. Aluminum’s role in causing Alzheimer’s disease is currently being researched and debated. However, there isn’t any sufficient evidence to show that aluminum is a risk factor for Alzheimer’s or a cause for dementia. Another common myth is that aspartame causes memory loss. There is no scientific evidence that supports the theory that aspartame affects cognitive function and memory loss. The aspartame product is used in foods and beverages, such as NutraSweet® and Equal®. So, consumers are able to consume these sweeteners without worrying about the products causing the Alzheimer’s disease.
The final myth is that natural therapies are able to stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. There is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, but there are several treatments available. The treatments may be effective in slowing down the declination of cognitive functions, but they are not able to completely stop the process. The FDA-approved drugs are effective in temporarily improve or stabilize the memory and thinking skills in individuals. There are also alternative medicines to the FDA-approved drugs, but they have not been proven effective in treating the disease.