According to the Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s affects 1 in 3 seniors and there are currently over 5 million people living with this disease. It is predicted that by 2050, there will be about 14 million affected by Alzheimer’s.
More recently there seems to be a push to erase the stigma surrounding Alzheimer’s. Many celebrities have spoken out against the disease and some, like Seth Rogan, have founded organizations to help raise money and awareness. Below are simple 4 ways to continue to break the stigma of Alzheimer’s.
1. Speak out. If you’re an advocate for finding help for Alzheimer’s, speak out! Several celebrities like Samuel L. Jackson, Terrell Owens, Tony Hawk and Judy Greer have all used their platform to voice their support for Alzheimer’s. By sharing your personal story you can help touch the lives of others and reate to those who may be experiencing the same thing.
2. Make sure to socialize. Recent studies have shown that being social with a person who has Alzheimer’s can reduce their symptoms. Often times Alzheimer’s sufferers may feel alone, or feel like they don’t have anyone to talk to. Reverse that stigma and talk to someone living with or caring for someone who has Alzheimers. This makes them feel included and not alone.
3. Consider the person living with Alzheimer’s. Feeling isolated is associated with the disease because of misunderstanding when it comes to Alzheimer’s. A disease does not define people. Underneath the disease is a person, and remembering that they also have the same feelings as those without Alzheimer’s will help them feel included and human.
4. Understand the facts. Because of the stigma surrounding Alzheimer’s, most people seem to not understand the disease fully. Once we start communicating with those experiencing Alzheimer’s first hand, there will be a better understanding on exactly what Alzheimer’s is and what we can do to become more aware.