Your memory can be taken from you in a flash. Or it could slowly deteriorate over time. Or, maybe, you’ll be one of the lucky ones who remains sharp as a tack until your final days. We totally understand that this sounds grim, but it’s just the reality for Canadians right now. The worst part is, there’s a prevailing stigma against people suffering from dementia, in that many people avoid them, instead of involving them in their lives.
It’s a tale as old as time: loved one has dementia, family can’t handle it, loved one is shipped to a home and visited sporadically. So, the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada has started a campaign called #StillHere, which is exactly what it says it is. People with dementia are standing up and saying, yeah, I have it, but I’m not dead. I’m here, include me.
747,000 Canadians currently live with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia, and it’s estimated that by 2031, that number will skyrocket to 1.4 million. And unfortunately, there is no real way to detect which hand you’ll be dealt early. In fact, the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada says, “No single test can tell if a person has Alzheimer’s disease.”
So, tell someone you know with dementia that you know they’re here, and you’re happy they are. And if you don’t know someone with dementia now, you probably will someday. Make the change now.