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While many people associate Alzheimer’s disease with memory loss, there are also a number of other symptoms that people who experience this condition suffer from. Sleep loss, poor judgment, difficulty with decision making, misplacing items, word loss, mood changes, vision and spatial issues and many other issues impact the more than 55 million people worldwide who are living with Alzheimer’s disease. 

Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month is observed with the purpose of increasing public knowledge and understanding about this disease while also garnering support.

History of Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month

While this set of symptoms probably dates back much further, it was in 1906 that German physician, Dr. Alois Alzheimer, described this peculiar, severe disease that has since become known as Alzheimer’s disease. Over the next many decades, this condition became more widely recognized and, by the 1980s, it was considered the most common cause of dementia in the elderly.

This event has roots that can be traced back to 1983, when US President Ronald Reagan called for the celebration of Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, which is still celebrated in November. More recently, Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month has been designated to be celebrated in the month of June.

Since its inception, a number of different famous people and celebrities have shown their support for the movement of Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month. Actress Marlee Matlin, NASCAR driver Ryan Blaney, comedian Chris Garcia, performer Tony Bennett, actress Brandee Evans and many others have gotten involved in the awareness campaign.

How to Celebrate Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month

Whether someone has had a personal experience or if they simply want to show support to the larger community, everyone is invited to observe Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month! Consider some of these ideas for getting involved:

Wear Purple for Alzheimer’s Awareness

An excellent way to show support for this event is to don the color purple in various ways. Wear a purple ribbon. Wave a purple flag. Or get serious about it and dress in purple from head to toe every day this month! Those who want to get some merch that supports the event can head over to the Alzheimer’s Association website and pick up some t-shirts with the logo: #ENDALZ. All in purple, of course!

Keep a Healthy Brain

While it has not been proven that Alzheimer’s can be prevented, there are certain ways people can take care of their brains that might help. Be sure to check with a medical professional about any health concerns and consider some of these activities that might be beneficial:

  • Eat healthy foods 
  • Limit drinking/smoking
  • Keep moving with daily walks or other exercise
  • Enjoy cognitive activities including games, word puzzles and more

Share Your Alzheimer’s Story

One important opportunity for observing Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Week is for people who have experiences to share their story. The willingness to be open and authentic can help to normalize these experiences, encouraging people that they are not alone on their journey. Get online, join the Alzheimer’s Facebook support group or choose another platform to share the story that might help bring hope and healing to another person dealing with similar struggles.

Those who want to see shared photos and read about other people’s experiences with Alzheimer’s can go find them at the Alzheimer’s Association website.  

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