For many, the fun of summer includes vacation travel and day trips. With planning and simple tips, people living with Alzheimer’s and those who care for them can continue to enjoy traveling.
The disease advances over time, and travel plans should reflect this progression. Early on, someone may be able to fly independently with an airline escort to and from their gate. As needs change, a person may require wheelchair transport through an airport and the constant presence of a caregiver. The following tips can make traveling less stressful and more rewarding:
May brings Mother’s Day, a time to celebrate the women who inspire us. It’s also an opportunity to learn how Alzheimer’s disproportionately impacts women as people living with the disease and caregivers.
Women are at the center of the Alzheimer’s epidemic. According to the Alzheimer’s Association®, almost two-thirds of the more than 5 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s are women. Even more shocking: In her 60s, a woman’s estimated lifetime risk of developing the disease is one in six; for breast cancer it is one in 11.
For someone affected by Alzheimer’s, connecting with others facing the disease can be a powerful and positive experience. Mutual support systems often develop from sharing information, feelings and ideas with those who understand the day-to-day challenges. To facilitate this exchange, the Alzheimer’s Association® offers in-person support groups and an online resource, ALZConnected®.
Have you ever spoken up for something that mattered to you or someone else? If so, you have advocated for a cause.
The Alzheimer’s Association assembles a nationwide network of advocates to speak up for the more than 5 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease and their over 15 million caregivers so their needs are heard at all levels of government.
Thanks to these dedicated advocates, who make phone calls, write letters, send emails and visit elected officials year-round, we have achieved significant policy victories in recent years:
February is Black History Month — an important time to highlight the fact that African-Americans are two times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease than whites and less likely to have a diagnosis of their condition. African-Americans are also at greater risk than whites for health problems like high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol, which is concerning since overall wellness is a factor in brain health.
Winter can make it harder to leave the house, but people affected by dementia can easily access care and support year-round from the comfort of their own homes. Services such as the Alzheimer’s Association® 24/7 Helpline (800.272.3900) and online Caregiver Center (alz.org/care) are free and available to people living with dementia, caregivers, family members, friends and the public.
It’s important for everyone to plan for the future, but legal plans are especially important for people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. The sooner planning begins, the more likely the person with dementia will be able to express his or her wishes for treatment and care, and designate decision-makers. And though these conversations can be difficult to have, being open and honest can help families avoid disagreements and distress later in the disease. Early planning also provides more time to work through the complex legal and financial issues associated with long-term care.
The holidays are a time for celebration and spending time with family and friends. For those who are affected by Alzheimer's or another dementia, the hustle and bustle can also be a time of additional stress. People with the disease may feel a special sense of loss because of changes they have experienced. Caregivers may feel overwhelmed trying to manage family gatherings and traditions while balancing caregiving responsibilities. The following tips provided by the Alzheimer’s Association may help your family have a happy holiday season.