June is Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month
The Alzheimer’s Association — Rhode Island Chapter is encouraging people to wear purple to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s and honor those affected by the disease.
The organization is also encouraging conversations about Alzheimer’s with a family member or friend who is exhibiting symptoms. A 2018 Alzheimer’s Association survey found a majority of Americans would be concerned about offending a family member (76 percent) or ruining their relationship (69 percent) if they were to approach that person about observed signs of Alzheimer’s.
It is Rhode Island's fifth leading cause of death, affecting more than 23,000 residents and 53,000 caregivers. Despite Alzheimer’s growing impact, many families struggle with discussing the issue.
“We are asking everyone to support Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month by wearing purple, the Alzheimer's Association color, and to talk about warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease,” said Donna M. McGowan, Executive Director of the Alzheimer's Association Rhode Island Chapter.
“Family and friends may be the first to recognize there may be memory loss, but they do not talk to their loved one about it. Having a conversation is vital because an early diagnosis can help everyone prepare long-term and obtain the resources they need."
Raising awareness is key, including learning and sharing the 10 warning signs of Alzheimer's disease:
1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life
2. challenges in planning or solving problems
3. difficulty completing familiar tasks
4. Confusion with time or place
5. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships
6. New problems with words or speaking or writing
7. Misplacing things and being unable to trace steps
8. Decreased or poor judgement
9. Withdrawal from work or social activities
10. Changes in Mood
The Rhode Island Chapter and supporters are hosting events and education programs to commemorate Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month.
Events Include: Cranston Recognizes Alzheimer's Awareness Month, June 13, 11:30 a.m., Cranston Enrichment Center with Mayor Allan Fung, the Cranston Senior Services Center, Hope Alzheimer's Center and the Alzheimer's Association Rhode Island Chapter
Partnerships in the City of Central Falls and Awareness for the Spanish-speaking community, June 19, 10:00 a.m., Central Falls Council Chambers with Mayor James Diossa, City Council representatives, Progreso Latino and the Alzheimer's Association Rhode Island Chapter
June 20, A Night at the Pawtucket Red Sox to honor event hosts for The Longest Day with Lt. Governor Daniel McKee and the Alzheimer's Association
They can find out more at alz.org/ri and a listing of the Longest Day events at RI Longest Day