It's a tragedy to loose the one thing in life, which is ours and ours alone – our memory. The ability to open the book of our own lives only to fumble through blank pages of memories, stories, and experiences we may never be able to recall. Loose our sense of self-reliance. Loose the recognition of those people nearest and dearest to us in a sea of obscure and nameless faces usually reserved for one looking out upon a busy street in a city one has never been. Anyone who has known another person with Alzheimer's knows first hand the devastating affect it ultimately has on the person and his or her family.
Currently an estimated 5 million Americans have Alzheimer's disease.
Currently, it is estimated that 24 million people worldwide are suffering with Alzheimer's disease (dementia).
By 2050 the number of individuals in the United States with Alzheimer's could range from 11.3 million to 16 million.
Alzheimer's disease usually begins after age 60.
While rare, it can affect people in their 40's and 50's as early onset dementia.
In progressed stages of Alzheimer's disease people fail to recognize familiar people and places including family and friends.
People with Alzheimer's disease will also begin to have problems speaking, understanding, reading, and writing.
In later stages, people with Alzheimer's disease may become anxious, aggressive, may wander away from home, and eventually patients need total care.
The typical Alzheimer's Caregiver is a 46-year-old married woman who works outside the home, reports the San Francisco-based Family Caregiver Alliance.
Likewise, the sometimes unkind stares from strangers watching as a person with Parkinson's disease struggles against ones own body. His or her body tremors and jitters uncontrollably, or alternately slows down virtually to a halt and becomes captive to the ice like rigidity of a body frozen in slow motion. The simplest of tasks become almost impossible. All the while one recalls in complete lucidity a time not long ago, when the same hands and feet they now battle to control, moved with utter grace and steady conviction.
Currently more than six million people worldwide are living with Parkinson's disease.
Parkinson's affects 1 person in 100 over the age of 60 years old.
40% of those people are under the age of sixty.
Over the course of this year 60,000 new cases will be diagnosed in the United States alone.
Young onset Parkinson's disease usually affects people 40 years old and younger.
One of the youngest people ever diagnosed with Parkinson's disease was 7 years old. I personally know her.
Parkinson's disease is a chronic degenerative neurological disorder which usually progresses from mild tremors to complete physical incapacitation.
Parkinson's disease is characterized by four major features: Rest tremor of a limb (shaking with the limb at rest). Slowness of movement (Bradykinesia). Rigidity (stiffness, increased resistance to passive movement) of the limbs or trunk. Poor balance (postural instability).
Ultimately Parkinson's disease leaves people unable to move, speak or swallow.
Here is a thought: 24,000,000 + 6,000,000=30,000,000 people world-wide
30,000,000 x 3.14 ( Avg. Size of an American Family ) = 94,200,000
The collective average number of family members affected by Alzheimer's & Parkinson's . . .
What an army for positive change this could be if we all did just a little to fight these.
Together We Can Find A Way .
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
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