Dementia Around the World: What’s does the Future Look Like?
In 2017, it was estimated that 44 million people around the world have Alzheimer’s or another degenerative neurological disorder. As elderly populations increase around the world, this figure is expected to rise significantly. In the U.S., a Baby Boomer population that is currently increasing is expected to put a lot of pressure on the medical community in the years to come. In this blog, we will go over some of the important figures that describe the future of Alzheimer’s, as well as discuss some of the ways scientists and medical institutions are working towards better treatment, care, and, hopefully, a cure.
In countries across the world, populations are increasing, with some of the highest population growth rates occurring in developing countries. This means that more and more people will be around to require medical assistance. But what already-existing, aging populations? In the United States, Baby Boomers (those born between 1946 and the mid-1960s) are aging and contributing to the United States’ elderly population. By 2029, around 20% of the U.S. population will be aged 65 or older. This fact implies that common diseases that impact elderly populations will likely increase in a decade. This may mean medical professionals will see more cases of Alzheimer’s and other degenerative neurological disorders. As populations of all kinds rise around the world, more and more medical resources will be needed. In order to achieve this, research has to be done now to find innovative solutions to increasing problems.
Alzheimer’s Research and Treatment
Current research is trying to find a way to reduce the burden of Alzheimer’s disease. Current medications treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s but do not treat the disease itself. While these medications can be very important for present-day problems, increasing population numbers will inevitably put more pressure on researchers and research institutions to find ways to treat Alzheimer’s and other disorders.
Organizations like the Alzheimer’s Association are constantly contributing to current research by funding researchers through grants and awards. Research today is trying to address the source of the problem: targeting the harmful proteins that are ultimately responsible for brain degradation. Trials are being run to see if advancement in medications can reduce the amyloid plaques. While there is not a guaranteed cure yet, innovative technologies and financial support from organizations are getting us part of the way there.
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 Source: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/fields/2002.html