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BrightFocus Insights on Alzheimer's Disease

Senior man wandering

Missing and Can’t Be Found: Search and Rescue for Someone with Alzheimer’s

Many people with Alzheimer’s wander, and too many get lost. When that happens, what do we do? Learn tips that will help the search and rescue professionals find your loved one. Read more.

Posted: June 2015

Photo of medications and a prescription pad

“Is It Something I’m Taking?”—Medications That Can Mimic Dementia

Learn about medications that can interfere with cognition and mimic dementia. Read more.

Posted: May 2015

Senior Couple

Managing Negative Reactions—Minimizing the Triggers of Alzheimer’s Behaviors

Learn helpful approaches that can minimize the difficult behaviors associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Read more.

Posted: May 2015

Senior man talking with co-workers

Telling Others That You or a Loved One has Alzheimer’s Disease

Learn important questions to consider when deciding to tell others that you or a loved one has Alzheimer's disease. Read more.

Posted: April 2015

Medical illustration of the body and various organs

Medical Conditions that Can Mimic Dementia

Learn medical disorders that can interfere with cognition and mimic dementia. Read more.

Posted: April 2015

Diabetes and Alzheimer's graphic

Diabetes: A Modifiable Risk Factor for Alzheimer’s Disease

There is little doubt that diabetes, among its other devastating effects, increases the risk and severity of dementia in general, and Alzheimer's disease (AD) in particular. Learn more about the connection between AD and diabetes.. Read more.

Posted: March 2015

Senior couple talking

Tips for Communicating with a Person Who has Alzheimer’s Disease

Communicating with someone who has Alzheimer’s disease, though challenging, is achievable. Learn helpful communication tips for visiting someone who has dementia, or communicating with them by phone or video chat. Read more.

Posted: March 2015

African-American Man

The Burden of Alzheimer’s Disease on African-Americans

This article discusses recent findings concerning the burden that Alzheimer's disease imposes on the African-American community, and some of the recommendations that are being made in order to address this disparity. Read more.

Posted: March 2015

Senior woman driving

Retiring from Driving: How to Make the Change

Learn some tips and strategies for helping an elderly partent retire from driving. Read more.

Posted: February 2015

Mother and Daughter Walking

Minimizing Caregiver Stress: Tips for Coping with Frustration and Anger

Learn some helpful tips for coping with frustration and anger that often accompany Alzheimer’s disease caregiving. Read more.

Posted: January 2015

Doctor talking with male patient

The Challenging Behaviors of Alzheimer's Disease: Other Treatment Options (Part Three)

This final installment of a three-part series explores some of the non-antipsychotic treatment options to help manage the challenging behaviors of Alzheimer’s disease. Some of these involve medications, while others are psychosocial interventions. Read more.

Posted: January 2015

Grandfather and granddaughter

Helping Children Understand Alzheimer's Disease

This article provides useful tips for helping a child understand the symptoms associated with Alzheimer's disease. Read more.

Posted: December 2014

Doctor holding a pill bottle

The Challenging Behaviors of Alzheimer's Disease: The Uses and Misuses of Antipsychotic Medications (Part Two)

Explore the controversial group of psychiatric medications, the antipsychotics, that are so often used to treat the challenging behavioral symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, in part two of a three-part series. Read more.

Posted: December 2014

Doctor calming an Alzheimer's patient

The Challenging Behaviors of Alzheimer’s Disease (Part One)

This article is part one of a three-part series and provides an overview of challenging behaviors associated with Alzheimer’s disease, including agitation, sleep disturbances, inappropriate sexual behavior, and apathy. Read more.

Posted: November 2014

Couple exploring the financial options for Alzheimer's disease care.

The Financial Costs of Alzheimer’s: What are the Options?

Understand the options for covering the costs of care when a loved one has Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia. Read more.

Posted: November 2014

Alzheimer's patient and caregiver working on a puzzle

Activities to Get the Alzheimer’s and Dementia Patient Engaged

Posted: October 2014

This article provides guidelines and ideas to help you assist your loved one to be more engaged in meaningful activities. There are many options, but knowing how to engage them in an activity is the bigger question. Especially when the person is stressed, distracted, agitated or sleeps a lot, it can be a struggle to get them going. Read more...

Photo of a doctor and a patient

Depression and Alzheimer's Disease

Posted: October 2014

About half of individuals affected by Alzheimer’s disease (AD) will experience clinically significant depressive symptoms at some point. Depression can occur during early, middle, or later phases of the illness. The timing of depression during AD influences its characteristics and determine the treatment approach that will be most likely to help. Read more...

Photo of an elderly man wandering near a garden

Tips for Managing Wandering

Posted: September 2014

It is estimated that six in ten persons with dementia will wander sometime during the course of their illness. Wandering can happen at any stage of the disease. There are steps caregivers can take to protect their loved ones from this possibility. Read more...

Illustration of the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain

Frontotemporal Dementias

Posted: September 2014

Frontotemporal dementias are less prevalent than Alzheimer’s disease; however, they are not uncommon, and they are every bit as destructive—but in some different ways. Read more...

Photo of a Senior Woman

Is it Alzheimer's Disease or Dementia with Lewy Bodies?

Posted: August 2014

Learn about dementia with Lewy bodies and how it differs from Alzheimer's disease. Read more...

Daughter Visiting Her Mom

When a Parent Lives Alone and Has Alzheimer's: It Takes a Village

Posted: August 2014

There are more than 5 million people in the U.S. with Alzheimer’s disease. An estimated 800,000 of those live alone. If you’ve ever been in a position to try to convince someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia to move from their home, you know it is difficult. A question that often arises is, “would it be safe to have my parent remain in their home, at least for a while?” The answer? It depends. Read more...

Couple Playing Tennis

Exercise and Brain Health

Posted: July 2014

It is widely accepted now that “what is good for the heart is good for the brain.” Physical activity, good nutrition, adequate sleep, stress reduction, and control of risk factors such as high cholesterol and elevated blood pressure protect not only cardiac health but also support optimal brain health. Read more...

Aide Holding the Hand of a Person with Alzheimer's

Tips for Working with Caregiving Aides

Posted: July 2014

The tone that is set in the early days with caregiving aides can be instrumental in their relationship with the person who is living with Alzheimer's disease. Read more...

Digital Tablet

Current Technology for Dementia and Alzheimer's Disease

Posted: June 2014

Whether it be for engaging a loved one with Alzheimer’s, managing behaviors non-pharmacologically, creating a safer environment, or monitoring from a distance, technology has taken a place in caring for our loved ones by providing some wonderful tools, both for those with Alzheimer’s, and for those who care for them. Read more...

Man having an MRI

Diagnostic Tests for Alzheimer's Disease

Posted: June 2014

Learn about the diagnostic tests that doctors employ during an assessment for Alzheimer's disease. Read more...

Professionals Talking with an Alzheimer's Patient

Warning Signs of Elder Abuse and Tips for the Caregiver

Posted: May 2014

Learn about the signs of elder abuse and what to do if you suspect abuse or neglect. Read more...

Daughter Communication with her Parents using Computer Technology

Tips for Long-Distance Caregiving

Posted: April 2014

Care for our aging parents, especially those with Alzheimer’s or other dementias, is difficult whether we are there, or at a distance. Learn some practical tips that will help you care for a relative who lives in another state or country. Read more...

Nurse Talking to an Alzheimer's Patient in a Long-Term Care Facility

Questions to Ask When Looking for a Long-Term Care Facility

Posted: March 2014

This article provides a list of the most impotant questions to ask when choosing a long-term care facility for a parent with dementia or Alzheimer’s. Read more...

Image of a Stethoscope on top of Money

What Medicare Covers

Posted: February 2014

Over the years since Medicare was started, it has grown and evolved so many times, that occasionally, it is smart to review what it covers, as well as what it does not cover. Read more...

A Man Hugging His Dog

Alzheimer's Disease: The Magic of Pets

Posted: January 2014

Whether it’s a big floppy dog, a bird, a cat, or even a fish aquarium, the benefits of having a pet for one with Alzheimer’s or other dementia are numerous. Pets bring great benefits to all of us—companionship, unconditional love, and fun. By their very nature, pets do not judge, and they are not critical. And for someone with dementia, those qualities make them a good companion. Read more...

A Doctor with a Syringe

Immunotherapy and Alzheimer’s Disease: Helping the Body to Help Itself

Posted: January 2014

Since the 1990s, researchers have been exploring ways in which the immune system’s effects could be recruited into the fight against Alzheimer's disease. Early experiments showed that rodents with Alzheimer's-like plaques induced by genetic manipulation could be immunized against toxic amyloid beta, the protein that aggregates into the characteristic plaques associated with this brain disease. Read more...

A Holiday Family  Gathering

Alzheimer's Caregiving During the Holidays: Making the Season Bright

Posted: December 2013

No matter the time of year, caring for someone with Alzheimer’s requires an understanding of the one for whom we care. As their caregiver, you know them well—the rhythm of their day, what they like, what calms or upsets them. This understanding is all very important in managing their daily life. But the holiday season is filled with events that happen just once a year, which can be exciting and heartwarming for many, or can be—for one with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia—confusing, over-stimulating and agitating. Read more...

Brain Scan Image

Alzheimer's Disease and Women: A Research Update

Posted: November 2013

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is, as we often hear, a public health problem of epidemic proportions. It is the fifth leading cause of death in Americans aged 65 and older. More than five million Americans are already affected. AD will become an even greater societal burden in the future, due to the growth of our population both in number and in expected length of life. While AD is a major source of suffering, death, expense, and caregiving burden for all of us, it has an especially powerful impact on the lives of women. Read more...

Daughter Holding Her Father and Kissing His Cheek

Alzheimer‘s Disease and Women Caregivers: The Impact and the Burden

Posted: November 2013

Over the last ten years, many studies have documented the impact Alzheimer’s disease is having on caregivers, caregiving employees, their employers, and on the economy. The numbers are staggering and growing. In America, at this time, more than five million people have Alzheimer’s disease. By 2025, that number is expected to grow to over seven million, and triple by 2050. Women are approximately two-thirds of those who suffer from Alzheimer's, and approximately 60 percent of Alzheimer’s caregivers are women, the focus of this article. Read more...

A Caregiver Talking to Alzheimer's Patient

Refusing to Take Medications: Tips for the Alzheimer’s Caregiver

Posted: October 2013

It is very common to hear from caregivers about the challenges of giving medications to someone with Alzheimer’s or other dementias. “When I give my mom her medications, she gets angry,” is an often heard statement. What is the best way to deal with this challenge so that medications are taken on a consistent basis?” Read more...

Alzheimer's Medication

Do Alzheimer’s Medications Really Help? 

Posted: September 2013

While clinicians await the arrival of new treatments, they currently have access to two classes of medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. These widely used medications have sparked controversy between those who consider them valuable treatment tools and those who regard them as hazardous and costly. Let’s look at the pros and cons of these medications from an evidence-based, yet practical viewpoint. Read more...

Daughter Hugging Her Mom

The Experience of Early-Stage Alzheimer's

Posted: September 2013

As persons with early-stage Alzheimer's are speaking out—online, in support groups, and in publications—we are learning more about what they are experiencing—physically, cognitively, emotionally, socially, and spiritually. How great it is that they have a "voice," but also it is helpful for everyone to be able to understand Alzheimer's disease better from an inside perspective. Read more...

Family Members Talking to a Professional

Alzheimer's Disease: Resources for Managing Family Stress

Posted: September 2013

It is not at all unusual for families to find themselves feuding when confronted with all the decisions of caring for an elder with Alzheimer's, or other long-term diseases of aging. Caregiver stress can run high and emotions can become frayed, but professional and objective guidance and resources are available for those who seek it. The resources mentioned in this article are good starting points for families who find themselves in this position. Read more...

The information provided here is a public service of the BrightFocus Foundation and should not in any way substitute for personalized advice of a qualified healthcare professional; it is not intended to constitute medical advice. Please consult your physician for personalized medical advice. BrightFocus Foundation does not endorse any medical product or therapy. All medications and supplements should only be taken under medical supervision. Also, although we make every effort to keep the medical information on our website updated, we cannot guarantee that the posted information reflects the most up-to-date research.

These articles do not imply an endorsement of BrightFocus by the author or their institution, nor do they imply an endorsement of the institution or author by BrightFocus.

Some of the content may be adapted from other sources, which will be clearly identified within the article.

Last Review: 05/13/15

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