The news is definitely out! It's nearly impossible to keep up with the daily updates tracking the medical race to understand the causes of Alzheimer's and to discover a cure for this debilitating disease. The years of battling quietly in isolation, and struggling to handle issues like caregiving alone, have moved into the huge sphere of public domain across media channels.
One only needs to Google "Alzheimer's" and a long trail of subtopics pops up offering a plethora of associations and industry health information. The fact that Wellsphere has a specific community devoted to this subject reaffirms this fact. Trades magazines and fundraising are starting to emerge; i.e. Today's Caregiver Magazine which debuted in 1995, now offers an online version which is full of helpful links and information. (See www.caregiver.com)
It seems the battle to understand, cope with and eventually cure Alzheimer's is being reported around the world at an exhilarating pace. In America, the New York Times recently ran a number of series including "The Vanishing Mind" and "Children Countering Alzheimer's", which profiled difficulties associated with caregiving and developing case studies for medical research.More complete summaries of these are referenced on my blog articles posted on my http://alzheimershope.blogspot.com
Alzheimer's is a hot topic.The U.S. has countless Alzheimer Association chapters in every state, while also providing specific support for armed forces members in Europe and the Americas. The Association is devoted to offering community information, updates and help with all aspects of the disease such as caregiving options.
Moving beyond the U.S., incredible developments are happening in countries like South Korea. The astounding network of creative initiatives to combat Alzheimer's is impressive: these services include providing over $1 billion in assistance through the government and its Ministry of Knowledge, to educate and integrate Alzheimer's issues within the social and economic fabric.
Incredibly, for example, a whole industry of products are stimulating an economic boom for supporting the dementia population. Programs exist for school age children who can visit nursing facilities and volunteer to help patients and caregivers. If they wish, they can even experience what Alzheimer's actually feels like through "Experience Centers" where 3-D glasses simulate dementia problems like confusion, loss of dexterity, etc.
Advances in Europe are also noteworthy. Just yesterday researchers in Germany published findings about how and why toxic protein aggregation in the brain leads to impaired cellular function. (www.medicalnewstoday.com/sections/alzheimers/) In plain speak, they found that proteins in our brain must have a correct three dimensional structure or they cause neural disfunction, ultimately leading to neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's or Parkinson's. By understanding how and why healthy cells break down, they hope to develop to fight neurodegenerative diseases, particularly in the early stages.
Let's not keep it personal and continue to share with each other. My family has been touched by Alzheimer's but I take comfort in knowing that a whole community can share their experiences with each other, offering a network of mutual support.
When discussing Alzheimer's recently, Dr.Oz told his audience : "everyone in the audience is either going to get Alzheimer's, or know someone who has it." I hope I can offer information through this blob, and foster support through my personal quest for answers.
Be well everyone and I'd love to hear from you. Rose :)