Today’s Top Alzheimer’s News

USA2 SPOTLIGHT

Please take our A-LIST survey to share your opinion on whether churches, synagogues and other faith communities should be welcoming, engaging and accommodating to those with dementia and their caregivers. Dementia Friendly America, paired with UsAgainstAlzheimer’s Faith Coalition, is planning a national campaign to engage faith communities across the country. A-LIST is a UsA2 initiative.

A March 29, 2018 AGEWYZ podcast, “Millennial Caregiver Lisette Carbajal,” focused on her story and how she received the news of her father’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis while away at college. Carbajal talks about how her career has been shaped by her caregiving responsibilities and sense of obligation to her immigrant parents. Carbajal is an UsAgainstAlzheimer’s advocate, and was featured in the joint study from USC and UsA2, “Millennials and Dementia Caregiving in the United States.

MUST READS

An April 2, 2018 USA Today article featured Seth and Lauren (Miller) Rogen’s “Hilarity for Charity” variety show fundraiser, which will be streamed by Netflix this year. Miller’s mother was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s 10 years ago. “I would say my mom’s sense of humor was something that stuck around for a long time. At this point, it’s been four to five years since my mom has been able to communicate at all and do anything for herself. She hasn’t talked or walked or cared for herself. She’s a shell of who she used to be, which is the brutal reality of this disease,” said Miller.

CAREGIVING CORNER

In a Being Patient “Voices” post, blogger, activist and former caregiver Lisa B. Capp writes about finding strength and moving gracefully from denial to acceptance after a loved one receives a dementia diagnosis. According to Capp, “It’s best to sit close. Attempt some physical contact (holding hands or a hug) and speak in a supportive tone of voice. Help your loved one to feel safe in disclosing what they are experiencing. Listen more than you speak. Give your loved one time to find their own words to describe what they feel and what they fear. Don’t try to fill the silent pauses.”

An April 1, 2018 The Advocate “Alzheimer’s Q&A” answers the question, “how can a spouse and an affected partner maintain emotional intimacy?” According to "Keeping Love Alive as Memories Fade: The 5 Love Languages and the Alzheimer's Journey," it's possible to maintain a meaningful relationship but it takes commitment and is not automatic. “The depth and breadth of the connection lies almost entirely in the hands of the care partner."

ALZ TECH

An April 1, 2018 CBC article looked at the ability of virtual reality to detect early-onset Alzheimer’s. A study out of the University of Manitoba finds that those with early-onset AD or another dementia lose spacial awareness abilities much sooner and faster than others. "I'm not claiming I can diagnose Alzheimer's but I believe this is one of the very good diagnostic aid to screen and raise a flag in time before other clinical symptoms become apparent,” said study lead Dr. Zahra Moussavi. 

REGIONAL HIGHLIGHTS

An April 1, 2018 Times News article announced that on April 18, 2018 the Pat Summitt Foundation will offer free wellness checkups and legal assistance for patients and caregivers affected by Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. According to Sheri Fox of Legal Aid of East Tennessee, “Legal wellness is as important as physical wellness, especially for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients and their caregivers. Obtaining the necessary legal documents before progression of the disease makes it impossible reduces stress and makes it less likely that your family and caregivers will have to engage in more complicated and costly legal actions later.” Space is limited and registration is required by April 13. To register, visit www.patsummitt.org/april or call (865) 524-1223.

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