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With some questionable health advice being posted by your friends on Facebook, politicians arguing about the state of the American healthcare system and a new medical study being summarized in just a sentence or two on TV---that seems to contradict the study you heard summarized yesterday---it can be overwhelming to navigate the ever-changing landscape of health news.

To Your Health: Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month

This is the time of year many people talk about memories being created: summer picnics, vacations, and reunions. However, it’s also a time of year to think about memory loss. June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. Dementia is a general term for loss of memory, language, problem-solving and other thinking abilities that are severe enough to interfere with daily life. Alzheimer's is the most common cause of dementia.

Sometimes it can be difficult to distinguish between everyday forgetfulness, typical age-related changes, and signs of Alzheimer’s. The Alzheimer’s Association points out that the key is it disrupting daily life by creating challenges in problem solving, difficulty completing familiar tasks, confusion with time and place, trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships, problems with words in speaking or writing, problems with retracing steps to find things, poor judgment, withdrawal from work or social activities, and changes in mood and personality.

If you notice any of the 10 Warning Signs of Alzheimer's in yourself or someone you know, don't ignore them. Schedule an appointment with your doctor. You can also contact the Alzheimer’s Association helpline. With early detection, you can explore treatments that may provide some relief of symptoms and help you maintain a level of independence longer, as well as increase your chances of participating in clinical drug trials that help advance research.


The 10 signs of memory loss: https://www.alz.org/alzheimers-dementia/10_signs

The 24/7 helpline: https://www.alz.org/help-support/resources/helpline

What is Dementia: https://www.alz.org/alzheimers-dementia/what-is-dementia

Support for Caregivers: https://www.alz.org/help-support/caregiving

Support for those living with Dementia: https://www.alz.org/help-support/i-have-alz

Local and community support: https://www.alz.org/help-support/community

MO DHHS Taskforce on Alzheimer’s: https://health.mo.gov/seniors/alzh-task-force/#:~:text=Function,challenges%20caused%20by%20Alzheimer's%20disease.

Facility Information: https://health.mo.gov/seniors/nursinghomes/alzheimersscu.php

Dementia Caregiving Training and Relief Program: https://health.mo.gov/seniors/dementia-caregiving/

MO Rural Health Association: https://mrhassociation.org/caregivers/

Darkness Descening: Love Poems for a Beloved Stricken With Alzheimer’s by Robert Hamblin: https://www.amazon.com/Darkness-Descending-Beloved-Stricken-Alzheimers/dp/1792733941/ref=sr_1_1?crid=CLQ66AU70889&keywords=Darkness+Descending+Robert+Hamblin&qid=1686086342&sprefix=darkness+descending+robert+hamblin%2Caps%2C99&sr=8-1
All royalties from the sale of this book will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

Thank you to Grace Davis, who is a member of the board of directors of the Alzheimer's Association Missouri Chapter for her assistance with this story.

Dr. Brooke Hildebrand Clubbs is an assistant professor in the Department of Leadership, Middle & Secondary Education. She writes for special publications of The Southeast Missourian and is a certified Community Health Worker.