Each September, organizations all around the world join forces to host memory walks, fundraisers, and campaigns to raise awareness about the millions of people in the general community that are affected by Alzheimer’s Disease or other types of dementia. The peak of activity during the month is World Alzheimer’s Day, which this year is on Wednesday, September 21st.
Unfortunately, a persistent stigma is still attached to Alzheimer’s Disease and other kinds of dementia. Many people believe that dementia is a psychological sign of poor intelligence or self-control. The focus of Alzheimer’s Month, and especially of the central day, this year on September 21st, is to elevate the public awareness that Alzheimer’s Disease can afflict people from all walks of life, of both genders, and of all races. It can begin to manifest itself early or late, but increasingly it is recognized that these symptoms are the result of many, many years of some as yet poorly understood biological process, and labeling Alzheimer’s as an “old-person’s” Disease is fundamentally wrong.
During World Alzheimer’s Month, individuals and organizations large and small are asked to support the affected communities by getting involved in some way, especially by raising funds for the support of research and for relief of the millions suffering from the problem.
The theme of World Alzheimer’s Month in 2022 is “Know Dementia, Know Alzheimer’s.” It follows the theme of the campaign in 2021, and focuses on the warning signs of dementia, on diagnosis, and on the contributory effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the levels of global dementia.
In the 2022 campaign, there will be added focus on post-diagnostic support. Thanks to ongoing research, some recent developments have brought about potential breakthroughs in both treatment and support. The World Alzheimer’s Month campaign in 2022 will try to emphasize the importance of supporting the people diagnosed with the disease, their families, and their families and supporters following a diagnosis.
World Alzheimer’s Day is organized by the website Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) along with sister bodies worldwide. The specific date of September 21st commemorates the first World Alzheimer’s Day that was organized in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1994 by ADI and has been observed every year since then.
On the day, ADI releases its annual “World Alzheimer Report,” which this year will center on post-diagnosis. This year will see the 13th issue of this valuable report.
World Alzheimer’s Month allows people living with dementia, their family and carers, their medical professionals, as well as researchers and scientists, innovators and entrepreneurs and the media from all around the world to share a sense of purpose and resolve, to unite with the aim of mitigation and finally defeat the cruel Disease.
The month also allows other Alzheimer’s and dementia associations around the world to promote their work in both the public and government spheres, to place themselves in a better position to influence opinion and government leaders. The month and the day alert government leaders and policymakers to the fact that Alzheimer’s is one of the most significant health and social care issues that has arisen in the past half-century. Alzheimer’s Disease is having a tremendous impact on health services around the world, and this can only worsen as the population grows older.v