There are a lot of negative and unfair beliefs about Alzheimer’s disease and the people who are living with the disease. Of course, the disease can be, and is often, devastating and quite challenging to say the least.
Many families have, however, been able to overcome their own misconceptions and take a more positive approach to living with Alzheimer’s or other dementia.
Unfortunately, many of these misconceptions are so ingrained in society’s beliefs that the majority of families are unable to view the disease as anything other than tragic. This creates a self-fulfilling prophecy, and their negative beliefs become reality.
Again, I’m not saying any of this is easy, but one of our strongest assets as humans is to stay positive and persevere. And that starts with hope – hope that there can be good in Alzheimer’s disease and that a family with the disease can live well.
This hope starts by how we see the disease and talk about it. With more communication focused on remaining abilities and less on loss, we can improve the well-being of those with dementia as well as their caregivers.
Sharing this hope will help millions of families fight back against the disease.
To continue this conversation, please read my article, Why We Must Reframe How We See Alzheimer’s, which was published on Next Avenue, and then picked up by Forbes.
I’m also sharing a pdf that was created by the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada that can help us all better understand how our use of words has an impact:
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