Articles, information or services regarding dementia.

The Apartment - A Guide to Creating a Dementia Friendly Home

The Alzheimer's Foundation of America (AFA) created The Apartment—a model studio residence built in AFA’s New York City headquarters to showcase ways that practical design and technology can greatly increase the quality of life for someone living with dementia and help family care partners protect their loved ones’ safety. Rosemary Bakker, President of Age-Friendly Design, was the lead designer who worked with AFA to design The Apartment.

Dementia-related illnesses impact the mind and affect virtually every aspect of a person’s life, including making many facets of daily living more difficult.

Most residences are not built with the needs of an individual living with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia-related illnesses in mind. However, almost every part of a residence can impact quality of life for someone living with a dementia-related illness and their family care partners. Even seemingly cosmetic choices, such as wall colors, furniture patterns, and dishware, make a difference.


A room-by-room online/print guide is available.

Dementia vs Alzheimer's - Which Is it?

The terms “dementia” and “Alzheimer’s” have been around for more than a century, which means people have likely been mixing them up for that long, too. But knowing the difference is important.

In the simplest terms, one is broader than the other. If the two were nesting dolls, Alzheimer’s would fit inside dementia, but not the other way around. While Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia (accounting for an estimated 60 to 80 percent of cases), there are several other types.

A correct diagnosis means the right medicines, remedies and support. It could also impact clinical trial eligibility and participation.

From NIH's National Institute on Aging - An Alzheimer's Fact Sheet

Alzheimer’s disease is a brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills, and eventually, the ability to carry out the simplest tasks. In most people with Alzheimer’s, symptoms first appear later in life.

Estimates vary, but experts suggest that more than 6 million Americans, most of them age 65 or older, may have Alzheimer’s.

The causes of dementia can vary depending on the types of brain changes that may be taking place. Other forms of dementia include Lewy body dementia, frontotemporal disorders, and vascular dementia. It is common for people to have mixed dementia — a combination of two or more types of dementia. For example, some people have both Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia.


Alzheimer’s disease is named after Dr. Alois Alzheimer. In 1906, Dr. Alzheimer noticed changes in the brain tissue of a woman who had died of an unusual mental illness. Her symptoms included memory loss, language problems, and unpredictable behavior. After she died, he examined her brain and found many abnormal clumps (now called amyloid plaques) and tangled bundles of fibers (now called neurofibrillary, or tau, tangles).

Thinking About Your Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease? Five Questions to Consider

"Ask yourself the five questions below to help understand your risk factors for developing Alzheimer’s disease."

The five questions are:

For more information check this article posted by AARP from the NIH - National Institue on Aging.

Resources for Alzheimer's and Dementia Caregivers

AFA provides a wide variety of resources for Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers. Whether you are just starting out on your journey with Alzheimer’s or dementia, or have been on the journey for a while, we are here for you. No one is alone on their journey.

The importance of resources for Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers.

A strong support system is essential for an Alzheimer’s caregiver. AFA was founded by a family caregiver to be a resource for caregivers and a place they can turn to for help, guidance and support in their time of need. It is vital for caregivers to be supported and equipped to give their loved ones the best care possible.

AFA offers a number of different resources for Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers, including:

AFA’s National Toll-Free Helpline

AFA’s Helpline is available 7 days a week. Alzheimer’s and dementia don’t take a day off, so neither do we.

Our Helpline is staffed entirely by licensed, dementia-trained social workers because we understand that when you need help, you want a qualified professional on the other end of the line.

We take calls, texts, or chats in 90+ languages to help those in need.

Alzheimer's Disease and Healthy Aging Resources provided by the CDC.

About Us

The Alzheimer’s Disease and Healthy Aging Program (AD+HAP) develops evidence-based, scientific information to educate, inform, and assist in translating its research into public health practice.

Alzheimer’s disease is the 5th leading cause of death for people 65 and older. Nearly 6 million people have Alzheimer’s disease at an annual cost of $291 billion. Sixty-seven percent, or $197 billion, comes from government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. The number of Alzheimer’s disease cases is expected to more than double to 14 million by 2050.

Can I Prevent Dementia?

"As you age, you may have concerns about the increased risk of dementia. You may have questions, too. Are there steps I can take to prevent it? Is there anything I can do to reduce my risk? There are currently no approaches that have been proven to prevent Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. However, as with many other diseases, there may be steps you can take to help reduce your risk."

Check out this article from Can I Prevent Dementia? (

Alzheimer's Disease - Information from Mayo Clinic


Alzheimer's disease is a brain disorder that gets worse over time. It's characterized by changes in the brain that lead to deposits of certain proteins. Alzheimer's disease causes the brain to shrink and brain cells to eventually die. Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of dementia — a gradual decline in memory, thinking, behavior and social skills. These changes affect a person's ability to function.

About 6.5 million people in the United States age 65 and older live with Alzheimer's disease. Among them, more than 70% are 75 years old and older. Of the about 55 million people worldwide with dementia, 60% to 70% are estimated to have Alzheimer's disease.

10 Early Warning Signs of Dementia You Shouldn’t Ignore (AARP)

How to spot early indicators that your loved one may have Alzheimer’s or dementia​.

"It’s not unusual to have occasional trouble finding the right word or remembering where you put things. But persistent difficulty with memory and the ability to perform everyday tasks might be signs of something more serious."

This AARP article will help you spot some of the early indicators of Alzheimer's or dementia.

3 Reasons Hearing Loss May Increase Dementia Risk

Could hearing aids help protect the brain?

Over the past decade, research has shown that compared to those with normal hearing, people with hearing loss have a much higher risk of developing dementia.

Increasingly, researchers are beginning to understand why. Here are three of the main theories that could explain the risk.

Virtual Memory Screenings

Alzheimer's Foundation of America (AFA) offers free virtual memory screenings which allow individuals to receive one-on-one, confidential memory screenings from a qualified professional using their computer, smart phone or tablet. This service, which is part of AFA’s National Memory Screening Program, began during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure that people could still get screened from the safety and comfort of their homes.

When are virtual memory screenings conducted?

Screenings are done by appointment daily, Monday through Friday. Appointments can be scheduled by calling AFA at 866-232-8484 or online by using the website below.

AFA’s National Memory Screening Program provides free, confidential memory screenings–administered by qualified healthcare professionals–to individuals across the country.

What is a memory screening?

A memory screening is a simple and safe “healthy brain check-up” that tests memory and other thinking skills. The memory screening is a series of questions and/or tasks that takes approximately 10 minutes to complete and can indicate if someone might benefit from a comprehensive medical evaluation. It is not used to diagnose any particular illness and does not replace consultation with a physician or other clinician.

Why are memory screenings important?

  • They are a significant first step toward finding out if a person may have a memory problem. Memory problems could be caused by a number of medical conditions, including vitamin deficiencies, thyroid issues, and depression, as well as dementia-related illnesses including Alzheimer’s.
  • Some memory problems–such as those caused by vitamin deficiencies or thyroid problems– can be readily treated. Other memory problems might result from causes that are not currently reversible, such as Alzheimer’s disease. In general, the earlier the diagnosis, the easier it is to treat one of these conditions.
  • Early detection of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) may afford a person the opportunity to take advantage of treatments that may slow the changes in memory and thinking skills or participate in a clinical trial.
  • If the memory problem is the result of a dementia-related illness such as Alzheimer’s disease, early detection may enable the person to begin treatments and therapeutic interventions sooner, afford greater opportunity to participate in a clinical trial and take a more active role in developing their health, legal and financial plans.
Alzheimer’s Foundation of America: 322 Eighth Avenue, 16th Floor New York, NY 10001

Additionally, many physicians perform memory screenings. Memory screenings are covered by Medicare as part of the Medicare Wellness Program, and are often covered by insurance companies as well. Check with your doctor for more information.

What is Dementia? Symptoms, Types and Diagnosis

An article from NIH's National Institute on Aging

Dementia is the loss of cognitive functioning — thinking, remembering, and reasoning — to such an extent that it interferes with a person's daily life and activities. Some people with dementia cannot control their emotions, and their personalities may change.

Dementia ranges in severity from the mildest stage, when it is just beginning to affect a person's functioning, to the most severe stage, when the person must depend completely on others for basic activities of daily living, such as feeding oneself.

Dementia affects millions of people and is more common as people grow older (about one-third of all people age 85 or older may have some form of dementia) but it is not a normal part of aging. Many people live into their 90s and beyond without any signs of dementia.

There are several different forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, which is the most common.

Hospice of the Valley - Dementia Care

Compassionate Dementia Care:

Hospice of the Valley helps improve quality of life for people with all stages of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias—from those just starting to show signs—to those who are quite advanced. Our experienced dementia team is here to support you every step of the way on your caregiving journey and can work with your loved one’s physician to create a customized plan of care.

Live Well with Dementia:

We support families living with all types and all stages of dementia. With our unique in-home Supportive Care for Dementia program and a full spectrum of services at our innovative Dementia Care and Education Campus, we help enhance quality of life. Caregivers learn to navigate challenges, create moments of joy and nurture their own well-being. Our goal is to help our community live well with dementia.

Reach our dementia team at (602) 636-6363.

Community/Senior Center Calendar and Newsletters

Please Share Your Feedback

Email Us!

This site is owned and managed by Ron Smith