NEWS // June 8, 2015

Get Active this Summer to Help Prevent and Manage Alzheimer’s Disease

There is increasing awareness that leading a healthy lifestyle, staying physically active, mentally stimulated and socially engaged can be helpful in reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.  Yet few are aware that these are also important elements in the overall wellbeing and successful care of someone diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of memory loss.

Increasing research suggests that physical activity can assist in managing dementia-related behaviors such as frustration, restlessness and sleep disturbances.  It can also help elevate mood, provide a sense of pride and purpose as well as reduce stress levels for both the individual with dementia and the person responsible for their care.  Staying active can involve simple activities such as taking a walk, working in the garden, listening to music or having lunch with friends.  There is also another alternative: the social engagement and activity programs at the Alzheimer’s Association.

The Alzheimer’s Association social activity programs provide a safe and comfortable environment for the person with dementia and their care partner to enjoy quality time together and participate in stimulating activities while connecting with others.  The social activity programs include:

  • Music Centered Wellness: led by music therapists, this class offers an opportunity to learn how to use music for stress reduction, cognitive stimulation, socialization and more!
  • C.L.U.B. (Connections. Laughter. Unity. Bonding): designed to encourage participants to stay active, be social and have fun through a variety of stimulating activities ranging from dance lessons and games to pet therapy and visits to local attractions.
  • Memories in the Making:  a unique fine art program that uses watercolor painting as a tool for communication, sharing memories and expression.
  • Walk n’ Talk:  guided walks at scenic San Diego locations that encourage physical activity, fresh air and conversation.  Current locations include Lake Murray, Chula Vista Marina and Crowne Point with additional locations coming soon.

Alzheimer’s Association social activity programs are offered every Friday and are always free.  For more information, call the free 24-hour Helpline at 800-272-3900 or visit the website.

Alzheimer’s disease is a growing epidemic, especially in San Diego County where more than 60,000 people are suffering from the disease.  It is an insidious disease, that not only claims the life of the diagnosed individual but puts intense emotional, physical and financial strain on those who love and care for them. More than 80% of individuals who are living with Alzheimer’s, are cared for at home by a family member. For this reason, the Alzheimer’s Association is committed to providing those affected and their loved ones with FREE support and resources including a 24/7 Helpline, community education, social activity programs, more than 35 support & discussion groups and one-on-one assistance from master’s level experts in Alzheimer’s disease. Along with providing the community free programs and services, the Alzheimer’s Association is unrelenting on advocating for public policy issues and critical research funding in hopes of accelerating the global effort to eliminate Alzheimer's disease.

The Alzheimer's Association joined Live Well San Diego as a recognized partner on March 17, 2015.