Thanks to celebrities like Glen Campbell willing to tell their stories, many more people are now familiar with Alzheimer's -- the deadly disease that slowly robs a person's memory and ability to perform everyday activities.
My prayer is that you will be moved to action by this film -- for yourself, for your children, and for your grandchildren. Alzheimer's, or related dementia, could be your story someday, or the story of a loved one.
But without a cure for Alzheimer's disease, we can only take productive aging so far. We can create opportunities for seniors, prevent heart disease and strokes and keep people physically healthy -- but if we cannot keep people from losing their minds we cannot ensure long, productive lives.
Patients with dementia can and should remain physically active in sports they had previously mastered. They may not be as accurate in keeping score as before, but if the dementia has not carved away their motivation to pursue the activity, it can bring all the same benefits as before.
The toll of Alzheimer's disease is reaching epidemic proportions. Someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer's in the United States every 69 seconds -- a somber reminder that we must do more if we are to find an effective treatment for this devastating, debilitating condition.
Although Alzheimer's is at least partially genetic, there is plenty we can do to keep our minds sharper. The technology we depend upon to keep our lives together, however, only seems to make us more scattered.
If we can target our adults with mild cognitive impairment -- forgetting phone numbers, where you put the keys, birthdays, anniversaries, and appointments -- we may have a real chance of preventing the slow decline into a world of dementia.
The empowering part of the story is that you can make changes, today, to dramatically reduce your risk for diabetes and as a welcomed consequence, reduce your risk for dementia, a disease with no meaningful remedy now or in the foreseeable future.
With multiple trials taking place simultaneously, this mean we need hundreds of thousands of people start this research without delay. We as scientists provide the science and the ideas, but we can't do anything without the help of people invested in this research to commit.
My biggest fear is knowing that one day, he will no longer remember my name or who I am. I do all I can to prepare for this moment, but I know, when that time comes, it will be the worst day of my life.