Can Alzheimer’s disease start in your twenties? Here are the signs of early onset Alzheimer’s disease | Health

Alzheimer’s disease is one of the most common types of dementia and although classic symptoms of the disease often begin after the age of 65, new research published in the journal Neurology suggests that beta-amyloid proteins which form plaques in the brain can begin to accumulate as early as 20 years old. The researchers saw how beta-amyloid proteins gradually accumulated throughout life and support previous research that found these plaques in the brain decades before the onset of Alzheimer’s symptoms. Diagnosing the disease at an early stage can help manage symptoms effectively. (Also read: Is there a link between Alzheimer’s disease and gut health? Here’s what a study says)

In some people, about 5% of the population affected by the disease, symptoms can begin as early as around the age of 30; this is called early Alzheimer’s disease. The symptoms are very similar to other forms of Alzheimer’s. Forgetfulness, confusion with respect to one’s environment, difficulty in performing complex tasks, language disorders could also signal early Alzheimer’s.

“Normally, when we think of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, we think of a confused old person, but beware, that may not be the case. There is a type of Alzheimer’s disease called Alzheimer’s disease. early Alzheimer’s. It’s usually before age 65,” says Dr. Shirish Hastak. , Neurologist and Regional Director of Neurology, Stroke and Neurocritical Care at Global Hospital Parel, Mumbai.

While classic Alzheimer’s disease usually begins after age 65, early Alzheimer’s disease can begin at age 30, the age at which people don’t suspect the disease is developing.

“The real problem with early Alzheimer’s disease is that it can be completely missed. Diagnosis is very difficult because in young people Alzheimer’s disease is not expected and there is no easy test to confirm it. It’s a clinical diagnosis that can be backed up – neuropsychological tests and special imaging. The reason it’s missed is because you may not be expecting Alzheimer’s disease at this age and that she may have a different presentation of late-onset disease,” says Dr. Hastak.

What Early Onset Alzheimer’s Disease Looks Like

Alzheimer’s disease that begins early in youth could be confused with mental health issues like depression or anxiety. If someone experiences changes in behavior or use of language, they should be checked for the disease.

“Patients with early-stage Alzheimer’s disease may not have memory problems and they may have more language impairment and visual/mood and behavioral disturbances. That’s why these patients are often diagnosed with depression, anxiety or psychiatric problems rather than Alzheimer’s disease It is important for people to keep in mind that certain language changes, visual disturbances and mood behavior in a young person could be an early onset of Alzheimer’s disease,” says Dr. Hastak.

He adds that the classic hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease are memory problems such as forgetting, misplaced objects and forgetting the day one is and recent memory is much more affected than memory. long term in this disorder. Other symptoms of classic Alzheimer’s disease are that the person may have difficulty performing complex tasks and may become lost in familiar surroundings.

“Finally, there is a rare genetic form of Alzheimer’s disease that is also early onset and autosomal dominant. So in early Alzheimer’s disease it is important to check if someone else in the family suffers from a similar disorder,” says Dr Hastak.

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