Learn to Love Your Brain During Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month
June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month in the United States, a time to turn the spotlight on Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, which affect some 47 million people globally.
Many think of Alzheimer’s and dementia as elderly diseases, but they’re not a normal part of aging, and it doesn’t affect only the aged; up to 5 percent of the more than 5 million Americans with Alzheimer's have younger-onset dementia, occurring before the age of 65. Early onset Alzheimer’s disease can occur in one’s 40s and 50s, and it’s not unheard-of in the 30s. The Alzheimer’s Association points out that “Everyone who has a brain is at risk to develop Alzheimer’s.” So Alzheimer’s disease and dementia are everyone’s concern.
What’s the difference between Alzheimer’s and dementia? According to the Alzheimer’s Association, “Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative brain disease and the most common cause of dementia. Dementia is a syndrome — a group of symptoms — that has a number of causes.” So some dementia is related to Alzheimer’s disease, but not all Alzheimer’s disease is dementia.
There is no way to prevent Alzheimer’s or dementia, or to reverse it. Frequently, the news reports studies that link certain lifestyle factors to dementia, such as traffic pollution, alcohol, and even diet soda, but much more study needs to be done. However, there are some lifestyle choices that medical experts believe may reduce the risk of the cognitive decline that leads to dementia. Here are “10 Ways to Love Your Brain,” via the Alzheimer’s Association:
Why so much purple? Purple is the official color of the Alzheimer's movement. Wear purple to show your support, then take a picture and share it on Instagram or Twitter using the hashtags #ENDALZ or #MyAlzStory.
For more information, go to http://www.alz.org/abam/
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When Alzheimer’s or dementia makes it difficult for you or a loved one to remain at home, consider The Courville Communities. We have skilled nursing team for long-term care. Contact us for more information.