• Beverly Beverly
    July 18, 2008
    Are your chances of getting Alzheimers more likely if both of your parents have (had) the disease?
    Beverly Beverly
    July 18, 2008

    My mom passed away from Alzheimers, and now my dad has it.  My sisters and I are concerned now about our long term health issues.

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FROM OUR EXPERTS

  • AFA Social Services
    Health Guide
    July 18, 2008
    AFA Social Services
    Health Guide
    July 18, 2008

    The likelihood of developing Alzheimer's disease if your parents had it depends on the type that they were diagnosed with. If they had sporadic or late-onset Alzheimer's disease, which is the most common form of the illness and generally occurs after the age of 65, there is about a 20% chance that a family member could develop it as well. If they had early-onset Alzheimer's disease, which occurs in less than 10% of the population and can start as early as the 30's or 40's, the odds are significantly higher, at around 50%. Some individuals with a family history opt for genetic testing, which can help alleviate some fears or sometimes motivate an individual to change his or her lifestyle. However, it is important to remember that genetic testing cannot guarantee a future outcome. For all individuals, including those who have family members with Alzheimer's disease, it is advisable to seek a full-scale evaluation by a physician if you begin to experience memory concerns, as well as to implement successful aging strategies, which can help delay onset or progression of symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, as part of your regular routine. Basic lifestyle changes to help promote healthy aging include regular medical evaluation, proper nutrition and hydration, adequate rest, regular exercise, decrease of stress, increase in mental activity, socializing with friends, and limiting smoking and alcohol use.


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