January is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month

January 7, 2015   ·   0 Comments

As the Alzheimer’s Society of Dufferin County gears up for their Annual Walk for Memories on Saturday, January 25, the Town of Orangeville is rallying behind the organization to help spread awareness about the disease.

On Tuesday morning, Mayor Jeremy Williams joined with representatives of the local branch to proclaim the month of January as Alzheimer’s Awareness Month in Orangeville.

“Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias are degenerative brain disorders that affect over 750,000 Canadians,” said Mayor Williams in the official proclamation. “[They] take their toll on hundreds of thousands of families and caregivers.”

The Alzheimer Society’s message this month targets women through their ‘The 72%” campaign, seeks to help raise awareness about the fact that women represent 72 percent of those living with Alzheimer’s in Canada.  The campaign aims to inform women in their 40s and older about the warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease, brain health and how the Society can help.

According to the press release from the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada, the reason there are more women than men living with the disease has a lot to do with the fact that women tend to outlive men. Age is a significant risk factor in the development of Alzheimer’s, leading to more women developing it in their older age.

While men also often receive a diagnosis of dementia, the impact of such a diagnosis on women is twofold. In the Canadian Study of Health and Aging Working Group in 1994, women accounted for 70 percent of family caregivers, which can lead to a large toll on the women who eventually have to provide round-the-clock care. That burden increases in households where women also have to hold down jobs.

“Women lead busy, hectic lives, often paying the price with their own health and well-being,” said Mimi Lowi-Young, CEO of the Alzheimer Society of Canada. “We’re asking them to invest time in understanding the warning signs. Whether they’re concerned about getting Alzheimer’s, have just been diagnosed, or are a caregiver, we want women to reach out to their local Alzheimer Society. We can support them throughout the disease.”

‘The 72%” asks women to take a moment to learn the signs, which are often misunderstood or ignored, as they are critical to helping early on. Without a cure in sight, early diagnosis allows for treatment and support so people can live the best lives they can and start planning for future needs.

“It is time to put our minds to it, to rethink dementia and to do the things we can do to help lessen the impact of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, such as keeping our brains healthy and pro-actively work on supports,” said Mayor Williams. “Creating Dementia Friendly Communities can be our first step to help reduce the burden of dementia in Canada. I urge all citizens of our community to become more aware and educated concerning the far-reaching effects of this devastating disease.”

In order to provide easy access to information on early warning signs, as well as to make them easily sharable on social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, the Alzheimer society invites Canadians to visit the campaign website at the72percent. For more information on local resources, visit www.alzheimerdufferin .org.

Readers Comments (0)

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.