Dementia Community Calendar April 26, 2019

Casino Night, fundraiser to benefit Alzheimer’s of Central Alabama, Saturday, April 27, 2 – 4, at Rittenhouse, 570 Southland Drive. rwilkes@rittenhouseal.com.

Cognitive Dynamics Foundation will host Crimson Community Cafe, a free cafe for people living with dementia and their care partners on April 27th at UPerk, in Tuscaloosa, 10 to 11:30 am.  Enjoy time with your loved one in a fun and low-stress environment, complete with some classic songs led by a student band from the UA Honors College! RSVP to crimsoncommunitycafe@gmail.com. The UPerk, 405 20th Ave., Tuscaloosa.

Caring Days Adult Day Care is hosting the 2nd annual Ride Down Memory Lane motorcycle ride, Saturday, April 27, in Tuscaloosa.  It’s not a poker run, but includes a new card game that will result in 2 grand prize winners.  The ride will end at Caring Days where there will be entertainment, lunch, t-shirts and prizes.  The cost is $35 and $10 for passengers.  Call Caring days at 752-6840 or www.caringdays.org

Alzheimer’s of Central Alabama Lunch & Learn, April 30, 11:30 – 1 pm, Brookdale University Park, with Rita Cowell, PhD, on “What our genes can tell us about Alzheimer’s Disease.”  Rita is a Fellow and Chair of the Neuroscience Department within the Drug Discovery Division at Southern Research. She maintains an independently-funded research program, while overseeing the Neuroscience Department with the mission of discovering novel, mechanism-based approaches to treat individuals with neurodegenerative disorders. The research in the Cowell Lab focuses on neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s Disease, Huntington Disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s Disease. Please rsvp to mpiggott@alzca.org.

Caregiver Support Event at First Baptist Church of Moody, May 2, 2 pm. 902 Church Street, Moody.  RSVP to church.secretary@fbcmoody.org.

The Brain Health Institute (BHI) (www.bhibrainhealth.com) will provide a free, confidential memory screening May 7, June 4 and July 2, from 12:30 – 2:00.  Screenings last 10 minutes and consist of a series of questions and tasks designed to gauge memory, thinking, and language skills.  Results will not yield a diagnosis and/or replace consultation with qualified health care provider but can provide guidance for further evaluation and treatment.  3125 Independence Drive, Suite 114 in Homewood.  Call 205-757-8947 for an appointment.

Alzheimer’s of Central Alabama Garden Art Party, Love in the Garden, Saturday, May 11, Iron City, 7 – 10.  Live and silent auction, featuring over 300 items including art, jewelry, trips, home décor, food and sports packages.  Support ACA’s services by attending the event or by donating to the auction.  www.alzca.org.

The Brain Health Institute (BHI) is offering a free 6-Week brainHEALTH class,  Tuesday, May 14 thru June 18, from 4 – 5:30.  The class will focus on brain healthy behaviors for dementia caregivers, those at-risk for dementia, and those with early signs of cognitive impairment.  The free course is provided with funding from Alzheimer’s of Central Alabama and the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA).  To learn more about the study and determine your eligibility, please contact the Brain Health Institute at: 205.757.8947 or email Dr. Lokken at lokken@bhibrainhealth.com.

Caregivers Day Out!  Thursday, May 23, Beulah Baptist Church, Tuscaloosa, 10 – 2.  The West Alabama Area Agency on Aging wants to celebrate you at Caregivers Day Out! Call 205-333-2990 ext. 2013 to register. 

News to know:

Take 7 minutes to watch this inspiring documentary about Lester Potts, father of Danny Potts, Attending Neurologist, Tuscaloosa VA Medical Center and Founder and President of  Cognitive Dynamics Foundation.  It won the audience favorite award at the Auburn Indie Film Festival, https://vimeo.com/186486866.

Happy Stress Awareness Month!  If you suffer from chronic stress and can’t influence or change the situation, then you’ll need to change your approach. Be willing to be flexible. Remember, you have the ability to choose your response to stressors, and you may have to try various options.

  • Recognize when you don’t have control, and let it go.
  • Don’t get anxious about situations that you cannot change.
  • Take control of your own reactions and focus your mind on something that makes you feel calm and in control. This may take some practice, but it pays off in peace of mind.

Develop a vision for healthy living, wellness, and personal growth, and set realistic goals to help you realize your vision. While you can’t avoid stress, you can minimize it by changing how you choose to respond to it. The ultimate reward for your efforts is a healthy, balanced life, with time for work, relationships, relaxation, and fun. Adapted from the West Alabama Area Agency on Aging enewsletter.

Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) has commissioned the London School of Economics and Political Science to disseminate the world’s largest survey on people’s attitudes around dementia. Results of the survey will form the basis of ADI’s next World Alzheimer Report, to be released during World Alzheimer Month in September 2019. Consider taking 10 minutes of your time to make a difference in the lives of people living with dementia and their care partners around the world. Learn moreand take the survey today!

A recent study by the Lancet Commission which found that “around 35 percent of dementia is attributable to a combination of the following nine risk factors: education to a maximum age of 11-12 years, midlife hypertension, midlife obesity, hearing loss, late-life depression, diabetes, physical inactivity, smoking and social isolation.”  In other words, more than one-third of dementia cases may be preventable through proactive actions taken to promote brain health across the lifespan and build cognitive resilience.

On April 10, 2019 the bicameral, bipartisan CHANGE Act was introduced to increase early detection rates of Alzheimer’s and other dementias. The proposed legislation would make improvements in the screening, detection and diagnosis of dementia in the existing Welcome to Medicare initial exam and in Medicare annual wellness visits. The bill would also establish payment mechanisms through Medicare with the goal of incentivizing the detection and diagnosis of dementia, as well as care planning services. Learn more by reading a press release from UsAgainstAlzheimer’s.

The University of Alabama has a new program that offers private, online support groups designed for dementia caregivers. It is similar to an in-person support group, but you participate on your schedule, by using social media.  You do not have to know a lot about computers. You can participate anonymously, without providing private information.  Each week, health and social work experts will provide educational information. You can interact with other caregivers as much or as little as you want.  Support group members are asked to log into the group at least once per week and to participate in 2 interviews. You will be compensated $30 for each interview.  See attached flyer.  Contact: Dr. Nicole Ruggiano | (205)348-4654 | nruggiano@ua.edu.

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church is opening a new respite ministry for people living with dementia.  This is a wonderful opportunity for respite care for weary caregivers, but more importantly, it will offer a joyful, stimulating place for those with dementia to thrive from 10 – 2, 2 days a week.  www.saint-lukes.com, foundersplace@saint-lukes.com. 205.802.6217.  For a list of all respite and day care programs in central Alabama go to www.alzca.org.

The Messages We Send: Stigma Toward Persons Living with Dementia and How to End It, Tuesday, May 7, 2019, 1:00-2:00.  Learn everyday strategies for countering stigma through person-centered approaches. Hear from a person with early stage dementia about her experiences related to these issues.  Registration is required to receive the webinar information. Sponsored by the Administration of Community Living webinar webpage  

How to Navigate Work When Immersed in Caregiving, AFA’s Care Connection webinar, May 9, noon – 1.  www.alzfdn.org or 866-232-8484.

Register for the free virtual “Advances in Alzheimer’s Research 2019 ONLINE SYMPOSIUM” from Technology Networks, which will highlight some of the most exciting research being conducted into Alzheimer’s disease. May 29, 2019. Register here.