Up & Coming Weekly

August 15, 2017

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 15 of 32

AUGUST 16 - 22, 2017 UCW 15 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM COVER STORY Coming Together for a Great Cause: Walk to End Alzheimer's by STEPHANIE CRIDER STEPHANIE CRIDER, Associate Publisher. COMMENTS? Editor@upand- comingweekly.com. (910) 484-6200. Alzheimer's Association Special Events Manager Jennifer Briand said the walk "gives people the opportunity to make a difference and support each other through this devastating disease. It lets people know they aren't alone." Each year, more than 600 communities nation- wide participate in the Walk to End Alzheimer's to help fund the Alzheimer's Association's mission to advance Alzheimer's care, support and research across the world. On Sept. 9, the Walk to End Al- zheimer's – Fayetteville, NC, takes place at J.P. Riddle Stadium (home of the SwampDogs). "Registration is from 9-10 a.m.," Alzheimer's Asso- ciation Special Events Manager Jennifer Briand said. "Several things will be going on during that time: our sponsors will have tables set up for walkers to visit; we will have a clown; a magician; a bounce house; princesses and super heroes; and a local radio station broadcasting from the event." The Promise Garden Ceremony begins at 10 a.m., followed by the walk around the stadium. The walk is about a mile long. "It is not a race," said Fayetteville Walk to End Alzheimer's Planning Committee Chair- person and Regional Sponsor Julie Russo. "It is about coming together. We want everyone to be able to par- ticipate, so we keep it short. In the past, we have had people with Alzheimer's walk with us and caregivers and people in wheelchairs." Russo added that it is free to participate and everyone is welcome. The Promise Garden Ceremony preceeding the walk is a vital, heartfelt part of the morning. It brings together all the participants who commit to fulfilling their promise to remember, to honor, to care — and to fight Alzheimer's disease. Using colored flowers, the ceremony also symbolizes and honors the four ways people are touched by the disease and the many reasons people come together to participate in the event. Blue flowers represent someone with Alzheim- er's or dementia. Purple flowers are for someone who has lost a loved one to Alzheimer's. Yellow represents someone who is currently caring for or supporting someone with Alzheimer's. Orange is for everyone who supports the cause and vision of a world without Alzheimer's. Virtual walkers are invited to participate as well. "You will still be given your own participant center to spread awareness and ask for donations; however, in the registration process you are letting people know you will not physically be there," Briand said. She added that she loves the way this event brings families and companies together in the fight against Alzheimer's. "It gives people the opportunity to make a difference and support each other through this dev- astating disease," she said. "It lets people know they aren't alone." So often, people suffer in silence and face unnec- essary isolation during an already stressful time. It doesn't have to be that way. While there is nothing like the camaraderie of an annual gathering to share an experience or fight for a cause, the Alzheimer's As- sociation supports caregivers, families and patients all year long. "I wish people were aware of the plethora of resources the association provides to help people," Braind said. For example, there is a 24/7 help line dedicated to answering simple questions about sup- port groups and resources in communities across the United States. There are also licensed care consul- tants with master's-level training able to provide care plans for families. The Alzheimer's Association's website, www.alz.org, provides a community re- source finder, blogs, clinical trials and more. "In ad- dition, I wish people knew that Alzheimer's disease does not only affect older individuals, but symptoms may start in your 30s, 40s and 50s, and entire families are impacted," Briand said. Briand noted that the association helps caregivers by providing free resources such as communication strategies and information on behaviors associ- ated with Alzheimer's. The association provides the 24/7 help line. The consultants at the help line also provide specifics to the local chapters for follow-up and face-to-face meetings. "We train volunteers to become support group facilitators and host support groups once a month across Eastern North Carolina," she said. "Finally, we are partnering with Transitions Guiding Lights on the Caregivers Summit in Chapel Hill on Aug. 22." Another way people can help is to support the Alzheimer's Association by spreading awareness. Engage on social media during June, which is Al- zheimer's and Brain Awareness Month. Sign up for Alzheimer's Impact Movement, which is the associa- tion's 501c-4 dedicated to advocacy. Ask your employ- er to host a lunch and learn to educate co-workers on the basics of Alzheimer's disease. Visit act.alz.org or call (919) 803-8285, ext. 8344 to register for the Walk to End Alzheimer's – Fayetteville, NC. By the numbers • Alzheimer's disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. • Alzheimer's is the only cause of death in the top 10 in America that cannot be prevented, cured or slowed. • More than 5 million Americans are living with the disease. • Almost two-thirds of Americans with Alzheim- er's disease are women. • In the U.S., someone develops Alzheimer's every 66 seconds. • One in three seniors dies with Alzheimer's or other dementia. • There are more than 15.9 million caregivers of people with Alzheimer's and other dementia in the U.S. • In 2016, 15.9 million caregivers provided an esti- mated 18.2 billion hours of unpaid care valued at $230.1 billion. • In 2017, Alzheimer's will cost the U.S. $259 bil- lion. This number is expected to rise to over $1 trillion by 2050. Signs and Symptoms • Memory loss that disrupts daily life. What's a typical age-related change? Sometimes forget- ting names or appointments, but remembering them later. • Challenges in planning or solving problems. What's a typical age-related change? Making oc- casional errors when balancing a checkbook. • Difficult y completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure. W hat's a t y pical age-related change? Occasionally needing help to use the settings on a microwave or to record a televi- sion show. • Confusion with time or place. What's a typical age-related change? Getting confused about the day of the week but figuring it out later. • Trouble understanding visual images and spa- tial relationships. What's a typical age-related change? Vision changes related to cataracts. • New problems with words in speaking or writing. What's a typical age-related change? Sometimes having trouble finding the right word. • Misplacing things and losing the ability to re- trace steps. What's a typical age-related change? Misplacing things from time to time and retrac- ing steps to find them. • Decreased or poor judgement. What's a typical age-related change? Making a bad decision once in a while. • Withdrawal from work or social activities. What's a typical age-related change? Sometimes feeling weary of work, family and social obligations. • Changes in mood and personality. What's a typi- cal age-related change? Developing very specific ways of doing things and becoming irritable when a routine is disrupted. Source http://act.alz.org

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