Monthly Archives: April 2015

Are Your Bathroom Habits Normal?

Pooping: What to Know Before You Go
Can a bowel movement make you giddy? How often does the average person pass gas? And more things to know about going No. 2.
Take Quiz ›
  • Should You Try to Stifle a Fart?
• Can Your Mood Trigger Constipation?
• Can Exercise Help You Fart Less?
Behind the Bathroom Door
Is Your Pee Normal?
Is it typical to get up to pee in the night? Is “shy bladder” a real thing? Test your smarts.
Take Quiz ›
16 Tips for Better Digestion
Steps to help you halt heartburn, beat bloating, dodge indigestion, and more.
View Slideshow ›
IBS Warning Signs
Learn what can trigger it, who gets it most, and what you can do to feel better.
View Slideshow ›
12 Foods That Can Trigger Diarrhea
What to avoid to help prevent diarrhea and other digestive problems.
View Slideshow ›

How Diabetes Affects Your Eyes

eye How Diabetes Affects Your Eyes
High blood sugar can cause damage without any symptoms, so it’s important to get regular eye exams. What you should know.

Tips for Exercising With Nerve Pain

prevent that nerve damage Tips for Exercising With Nerve Pain
If you have neuropathy, exercise can actually help slow further nerve damage. Here’s how to work out safely.

Diabetes Dos and Dont’s

Diabetes Dos and Dont’s
Certain myths about diabetes are so common, you might think they’re true. Check your knowledge here.

Advances in Vision

WebMD's Future of Health
Advances in Vision
From an end to reading glasses to a cure for blindess, see how pioneering techniques are targeting vision problems.
The Bionic Eye
The future of eye care has never been brighter. Take an inside look at the device that helps blind people see again.
Looking Ahead
“This is probably one of the most exciting times in ophthalmology” for advances in the diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases.
See What’s in Store for Eyes
Smartphones could bring the doctor’s office to you, and you might be able to ditch reading glasses for good.

Alzheimer’s Association FGCC eNews April 2015

 Florida Gulf Coast Chapter

April 2015
In This Issue
Calendar of Events
Inside the Brain: AD Brain Tour
Support Groups
Caregiver Jewels: Maintain Proper Nutrition
New Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures Released
2015 Advocacy Forum in D.C.
Caregivers and Sleep Study

Serving 17 Counties in Florida from eight offices and one mobile unit, the Chapter offers a wide range of programs.

To find events in your area, please click on a link below to download that areas calendar;or visit Chapter programs.

All programs are open to the public unless otherwise specified.

Inside the Brain: AD Brain Tour
Brain TourThis interactive brain tour shows how the brain works with and without Alzheimer s disease.Scientists have identified several hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease which the tour goes over. Take the tour: Inside the Brain Tour.

Support Groups

Alzheimer’s disease and other related dementias are life-changing for both those who are diagnosed and those close to them. Alzheimer’s Association Florida Gulf Coast Chapter affiliated support groups provide a place to connect with other caregivers who truly understand what you are going through.

Support Groups: Meetings are open to the public and free of charge. All of our support groups are facilitated by individuals who have received training as required by Chapter and National Alzheimer’s Association standards.

New support groups periodically form and existing groups change or update. Please click on a link below to read the newest version of the support group list in your area:

Message Boards: The Alzheimer’s Association message boards and chat rooms are your online communication forum. Our message boards have over 9,000 registered members from around the United States, and many more people who simply browse the stories and information that is offered 24 hours a day. Click here to join.

The Alzheimer’s Association requests that service providers, students and product representatives refrain from attending these support groups. The support groups are for family members to share with one another in a confidential setting.

Caregiver Jewels

Emily Reese, Program Specialist, AAFGCC

Caregiver Jewels is a column featuring tips from family and professional caregivers throughout our 17 county service area. These “golden nuggets” represent caregiving strategies and tricks of the trade.

For the column to be a success we need your input! It may be a “golden nugget” you say to get your loved one to attend a program or an activity to redirect their attention. Whether your tip is a diamond, emerald or ruby – all are valuable! So, please share the wealth! Send your tip to or contact your local office.

March 2015 

Maintain Proper Nutrition


Concerns about appetite and eating are common for caregivers of someone with dementia. A caregiver shared a trick that has helped her husband at mealtime to maintain proper nutrition.

“My husband is more interested in eating if his meal is in a divided plate. Small portions can be put in each section, and he can manage feeding himself quite well that way. Sometimes I’ll add another small bowl with raw veggies or fruit segments.  He eats more fruit and vegetables if they’re cut up and in their individual pretty bowl.”

If a person with dementia’s dietary habits change it is important to ask why. Is there a change in health? Could ill-fitting dentures be an issue or maybe a sore in the mouth? Could appetite changes be the result of a drug interaction? For all these reasons and more it is important to have changes in eating habits evaluated by a healthcare professional who can determine if the change is due to a treatable / manageable cause or advancing dementia. If advancing dementia is the cause, there are many tips to help the person maintain independence with feeding (such as the divided bowl or tip) while ensuring proper nutrition. Learn more:

Quick Links

New Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures Released
The 2015 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures report takes an in-depth look at the prevalence, incidence, mortality and economic impact of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. This year’s edition features a special report on receiving an Alzheimer’s diagnosis.

The Alzheimer’s Association 2015 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures report is a comprehensive compilation of national statistics and information on Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. The report conveys the impact of Alzheimer’s on individuals, families, government and the nation’s health care system. Since its 2007 inaugural release, the report has become the preeminent source covering the broad spectrum of Alzheimer’s issues.

The Alzheimer’s Epidemic and Its Impact

According to the report, an estimated 5.3 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease in 2015, including 500,000 in Florida. Barring the development of medical breakthroughs, the number of Americans with Alzheimer’s disease will rise to 13.8 million by 2050.
Almost half a million (approx. 473,000) people age 65 or older will develop Alzheimer’s in the U.S. in 2015.

And two-thirds (3.2 million) of Americans over age 65 with Alzheimer’s are women.

Every 67 seconds, someone in the U.S. develops Alzheimer’s. By mid-century, an American will develop the disease every 33 seconds. And two-thirds (3.2 million) of Americans over age 65 with Alzheimer’s are women.

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S., and the fifth-leading cause of death for those age 65 and older. From 2000-2013, the number of Alzheimer’s deaths increased 71 percent, while deaths from other major diseases decreased. (Heart disease deaths decreased 14 percent; stroke deaths, 23 percent; HIV deaths, 52 percent; prostate cancer deaths, 11 percent; and breast cancer deaths, 2 percent.

Costs and financial impact.

Alzheimer’s is the costliest disease to society. The total 2015 payments for caring for those with Alzheimer’s and other dementias are estimated at $226 billion, of which $153 billion is the cost to Medicare and Medicaid alone. The total payments for health care, long-term care and hospice for people with Alzheimer’s and other dementias are projected to increase to more than $1 trillion in 2050 (in current dollars).

Unpaid caregivers.

In 2014, the 15.7 million family and other unpaid caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias provided an estimated 17.9 billion hours of unpaid care, a contribution to the nation valued at $217.7 billion (with care valued at $12.17 per hour).
Further, 75 percent of all people with Alzheimer’s or dementia are cared for by unpaid caregivers, typically a spouse who is also experiencing a decline in health. In 2014, 1,058,000 Florida caregivers provided over 1.2 billion hours of unpaid care to people with Alzheimer’s and dementia valued at $14.7 trillion. With the annual cost of placement in a skilled nursing facility for a person living with Alzheimer’s disease averaging $77,380 caregivers who provide care for their loved one with Alzheimer’s at home represent a tremendous cost savings for the State of Florida.

Too often this benefit is at the expense of the caregivers’ physical, emotional and financial well-being. This is exhibited by increased health care costs of caregivers of $688 million per year.

Services for families.

The Florida Gulf Coast Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association provides many services to support caregivers and people with dementia. The 24/7 Confidential Helpline (1-800-272-3900) provides information and resources on all aspects of dementia and caregiving. Through Care Consultations program specialists offer personalized services to families in needs often times helping to resolve issues while helping to establish long-term plans. Trainings, support groups, and social engagement opportunities for caregivers and people in the early stages of dementia offer formal and informal education while helping to establish social connections with peers.

Learn more about other Chapter services and the 2015 Facts and Figures report.

2015 Advocacy Forum in D.C.
The Advocacy Forum is a unique opportunity for Alzheimer’s advocates from across the country to directly appeal to their members of Congress about Alzheimer’s disease. The 2015 Forum took place March 23-25. The Florida Gulf Coast Chapter where part of the 1000 advocates from across the United States that gave personal testimonies and advocated for increased National Institute of Health funding for Alzheimer’s disease research.
Thank you to the Florida Gulf Coast Chapter Ambassadors, Board Member Paul Charlesworth, and CEO, Gloria Smith who represented our area and gave voice to caregivers and people with dementia.
Senators Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio and Representatives Kathy Castor and Gus Bilirakis, Allen Grayson, Curtis Clawson, Thomas Rooney, Dennis Ross, David Jolly, and Vern Buchanan were among the offices visited by advocates of the Florida Gulf Coast Chapter.

Brooks Gentry, Sherrie Nickell, Gloria Smith, Paul Charlesworth, Donna Shands, Rebecca Reinecke, and not shown LaVern Jackson attending the Alzheimer’s Association Advocacy Forum in DC. (Names listed from left to right).

Caregivers and Sleep Study
Are you a caregiver and have trouble sleeping? If so, you may be interested in a National Institute of Health funded study (IRB #3931) that tests interventions that improve sleep and overall health.
Ran by researchers at the University of South
Florida College of Nursing Caregiving Lab the initial study is two weeks long and includes three visits to your home. There is no cost to participate and you are compensated for your time.
Learn more by reading the study flyer. Or please contact: Margaret Gross-King, RN, MS, Project Manager at (813) 974-1827 /
If you have questions, concerns or just wish to talk to someone please feel free to contact us.


Alzheimer’s Association Florida Gulf Coast Chapter
24/7 Confidential Helpline: 1-800-272-3900


Alzheimer’s Association Florida Gulf Coast Chapter
Chapter Headquarters, 14010 Roosevelt Blvd., Suite 709, Clearwater, FL 33762 Telephone: 727.578.2558

National Headquarters-Alzheimer’s Association National Office, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl. 17, Chicago, IL 60601

Alzheimer’s Association is a not-for-profit  501(c)(3) organization © 2010 Alzheimer’s Association. All rights reserved.

24/7 Helpline: 1.800.272.3900