Healthcare TipsMental Well-Being

There’s no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, which is what makes the fight so important

June 15, 2022

If you start seeing a lot of purple this month, it’s likely because with more than 55 million people worldwide suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia, a lot of people have good reason to draw attention to Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. Purple is the official color of the movement, and this is the month for raising awareness. 

Find out more about dementia and ways you can help fight it.

What is Alzheimer’s disease?

Dementia is a term for memory loss and other cognitive issues that are serious enough to interfere with a person’s life. Alzheimer’s disease is a specific type of dementia—and the most common, accounting for 60-80% of dementia cases. 

Typically, Alzheimer’s affects people who are age 65 or older, although it can start at a younger age. It’s not a normal part of aging, but a disease in which neurons lose function and die because their communication, metabolism, and repair processes have been interrupted. It starts in the parts of the brain involved in memory and grows to affect many areas of the brain, stealing a person’s ability to live and function on their own. People typically live four to eight years after diagnosis. 

None of that is especially encouraging news, which is why getting out the word is so important for addressing the disease and supporting research.

Know the signs of Alzheimer’s

According to Alzheimer’s Association, you need to schedule an evaluation if you have any of the following ten symptoms: 

Join the fight.

A lot remains unknown about Alzheimer’s and dementia, which is what makes awareness so important. Alzheimer’s Association deems June 21—the longest day of the year—the pinnacle of its monthlong effort to “fight the darkness of Alzheimer’s” through fundraising. You can set up a fundraiser of your own or donate through the site. 

You can also become an advocate to learn more and to receive alerts about actions you can take to help influence policy decisions and to keep spreading the word about this disease, which at present is the cause of death for one in three seniors. We can help change that by supporting critical research efforts and policy decisions.