At Wednesday’s weekly meeting of the Corbin Kiwanis Club, April Stauffer of the Alzheimer’s Association took the podium to discuss dementia. Stauffer is a Community Outreach Coordinator working in the association’s greater Kentucky and southern Indiana chapter.
Stauffer began her presentation by informing the crowd on hand inside David’s Steakhouse that everyone is at risk of Alzheimer’s Disease and other forms of dementia. She was quick to point out, however, that certain preventative measures such as exercise, a healthy diet, regular social interaction and keeping your brain active can all help to reduce the chance of developing dementia.
As for the work that the Alzheimer’s Association is doing to help those already affected by the disease, Stauffer explained that 24-hour help lines are available, as well as support groups and educational programs. She said the association also regularly advocates for legislation that could help those suffering from dementia, as well as their families.
Stauffer mentioned several early warning signs that could potentially indicate a person is developing some form of dementia. Those warning signs include: Sudden changes in behavior, confusion with time and/or place, problems speaking and writing, frequently losing things and a general increased difficulty in day-to-day life. A comprehensive list of early signs and symptoms can be found on the Alzheimer’s Association’s official website at www.alz.org.
Stauffer encouraged those interested in helping this cause to visit www.alz.org/walk, and consider signing up to participate in an upcoming Walk to End Alzheimer’s. Currently, there are four walks scheduled for the fall of this year – in Lexington on September 12, in Berea and in Knoxville, TN on October 3 and in Somerset on October 17.
Alzheimer’s support groups are also holding regular monthly meetings in our local area. One group meets on the second Tuesday of every month at Village Heights in London. For more information, call Kimberly Croley, PharmD at 606-878-0761. All caregivers and families of persons with dementia-related illnesses are welcome.
Another group meets the first Sunday of each month at First Baptist Church in Williamsburg. For more information call 606-549-0280, or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the Alzheimer’s Association, call 800-272-3900.
2020 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures:
- Alzheimer’s Disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States.
- More than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s
- 50% of primary care physicians believe the medical profession is not ready for the growing number of people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias
- 16 million Americans provide unpaid care for people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias