Victims of Alzheimer's Are Given Hope With Memories
Alzheimer’s and dementia ravage the minds of our friends and loved ones every day. There is no how-to book that can make coping with this disease bearable for the victims or their loved ones.
Not being recognized by your own parents, dealing with their hostility as a result of their feelings of worthlessness because their minds are not as sharp as they once were – how can we get them to remember?
According to the Alzheimer’s Association – 5.4 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease, it’s the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States and the only cause of death among the top 10 in the United States that cannot be prevented, cured or even slowed. Payments for care are estimated to be $200 billion in the United States.
That is a very steep amount of money being spent on a disease for which most nursing homes don’t have the capability of treating. Even with the proper treatments, there is no way to clear the minds and restore the memories of the victims of this disease.
Dan Cohen is an ambitious social worker with great ideas. He has discovered the power of personalized-music and the ability that it has to awaken deeply locked memories in patients with Alzheimer’s and dementia. He embarked on a journey to introduce this method into palliative care. Dan feels that this should become a standard practice.
Dan’s effort to bring personalized-music programs to all 16,000 nursing homes in the U.S. is the subject of the feature documentary film Alive Inside: A Story of Music & Memory directed by Michael Rossato-Bennett.
“He’s just a simple guy who had a simple idea and was surprised by its result. I think that’s what lies at the heart of the story and why the film is so powerful.” Michael spoke of Dan’s commitment to helping these people.Continued on the next page