BOWLING GREEN - Free confidential memory screenings will be available Nov. 18 as part of National Memory Screening Day, an annual initiative of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA) designed to improve overall health maintenance and promote proper detection of memory problems.
AFA encourages adults, including those with memory concerns, a family history of Alzheimer’s disease or a desire to establish a baseline score, to take advantage of the screenings and to pick up educational materials about memory concerns, successful aging and caregiving.
The face-to-face screening takes only about five to 10 minutes and consists of a series of questions and tasks. It is administered by a qualified healthcare professional, such as a physician, nurse, psychologist or social worker. The results do not represent a diagnosis, and AFA advises those individuals who score poorly or who have normal scores but are still concerned to follow up with their physician or another qualified healthcare professional.
Now in its sixth year, AFA’s National Memory Screening Day coincides with National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, which takes place during November. Sites across the country will be participating in the event.
On Nov. 18, the Wood County Committee on Aging will hold memory screenings at 305 North Main St., Bowling Green, from 1 to 3 p.m. It will also offer hand-on cognitive exercises to maintain mental stimulation, tips from health professionals on ways to keep your mind active and have a chance to win a Nintendo DS brain age game. The event is sponsored by Walgreens, Sterling House of Bowling Green, Interim Health Care and the Wood County Committee on Aging. For more information, call 419-353-5661.
Eric J. Hall, AFA’s president and CEO, said National Memory Screening Day is an important vehicle “to open up a dialogue about memory concerns.”
“Checking your brain health is just as critical as checking the health of the rest of your body. If you are experiencing memory problems, it is better to learn the cause earlier rather than later so that you can be pro-active,” Hall said.
A subsequent medical exam may reveal that the person has a reversible condition such as a vitamin deficiency or thyroid problem, or an irreversible disorder like Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia. Warning signs of dementia include forgetting people’s names and events, asking repetitive questions, loss of verbal or written skills and confusion over daily routines.
For more information about National Memory Screening Day, visit www.nationalmemoryscreening.org or call 866-AFA-8484.
Learn more about the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America by calling 866-AFA-8484 or visiting www.alzfdn.org. AFA’s services include a toll-free hot line, counseling, educational materials, a free caregiver magazine, and professional training.