September hosts a month-long celebration to boost Alzheimer’s awareness, with September 21 marking the 20th anniversary of World Alzheimer’s Day. Currently, over 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s dementia. Even more daunting is the fact that one American is diagnosed with this deadly disease every 67 seconds. If scientists could successfully develop an Alzheimer’s antidote, over 500 million lives would be spared around the world each year.
For caregivers who are unfamiliar with Alzheimer’s and its subsequent disease process, it’s best to turn to the Alzheimer’s Association for help. According to this authority, Alzheimer’s is “a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior.” The association goes on to say that Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia and makes up four of every five dementia cases. As if that weren’t enough, it is estimated that as many as 16 million Americans will have the disease in 2050.
Good Things Come from World Alzheimer’s Day
Every year on September 21, people around the world take part in Alzheimer’s Day activities. Some events collect money for research; others lobby for Medicare reform. In celebration of World Alzheimer’s Day 2010, a group of researchers bicycled cross-country in the Alzheimer’s Breakthrough Ride. Their mission was to collect petition signatures that would essentially force elected officials to make Alzheimer’s disease a national priority. Riders crossed the finish line on World Alzheimer’s day and promptly delivered the list of signatures to Congress’ front door. Talk about sending a message!
What’s Your Alzheimer’s IQ?
Alzheimer’s dementia is an overwhelming and all-too-common problem among seniors. For a bulk of independent older adults, in-home care duties often fall to a family member. More and more adult children are being charged with the duty of caring for an ailing parent, making them more susceptible to stress and isolation.
Though we don’t yet know how to prevent Alzheimer’s or have a cure looming in the near future, seniors and their caregivers can participate in a number of pro-active techniques that are thought to ward off the disease.
Let’s take a look at some activity suggestions that are known to help seniors remain physically and mentally healthy:
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