New report shows numbers of families affected by Alzheimer’s


March 17, 2011

The Alzheimer's Association has recently released a new report that has highlighted the growing burden that Alzheimer's disease is placing on families. Now, the organization estimates that 5.4 million adults in the United States have the condition while almost 15 million caregivers are tending to them. 

Families are putting in around 17 billion hours of unpaid care every year and many are reporting symptoms of depression and stress on physical and emotional levels. The report states that 80 percent of care is done at home.

This may leave many individuals feeling overwhelmed. If caregivers are looking for some relief, they may want to consider installing a medical alert system. This device can enable older adults to instantly send a personal emergency response message if they are in need of assistance, so families may be able to take breaks while tending to the needs of a dementia patient.

The report also found that 60 percent of the caregivers for all dementia diseases are women and most are 55 and older. To add to their already stressful responsibilities, 44 percent of these individuals are employed in full- or part-time positions.

These findings seem to correlate with The Shriver Report, which has called Alzheimer's a woman's disease because two-thirds of those who suffer from the condition are females and women also comprise the majority of caregivers.