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Alzheimer's Association 052018

May 16, 2018|

AN INTERVIEW WITH KARA GRIFFEY, WALK DIRECTOR WITH THE ALZHEIMER’S ASSOCIATION OF OREGON AND SW WASHINGTON, ABOUT THE WORK THEY AROUND ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE AND ABOUT THEIR WALKS COMING UP LATER IN THE SUMMER.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

This is match was going in Entercom radio Portland public affairs program I'm hearing blocks of the Alzheimer's Association is the leading voluntary health organization and alzheimer's care support and research. And on microscope this time are gonna find out what the Alzheimer's Association is doing and our community. On the show this time I would like to welcome Kara Griffey caraway is he walked director with the Alzheimer's Association the Oregon and selfless Washington. There Kara how are you all doing good carrot things are having me so I'm thanks for coming into absolutely. So let's talk about so first let's talk about you. Joey tell me about yourself. Cheryl why am I partly native. I then and fundraising for the last ten years. Went to school locally here in Carolina coroner Pacific college. And I love nonprofit I love working with people and so. Was able to fully launch into the Alzheimer's Association and 2013. And it's been amazing just getting to work with incredible family isn't staff and volunteers across the entire stated in south of Washington. So tell me about the local chapter look what kind of thing lead is up to. Our always busy so though Alzheimer's Association words leading voluntary health organization and all famers care support and research. And her really and I go two for families who are dealing with this disease in their family offering support services. Such as our 21 have helped lion we have caregiver resource says. Support groups so we really wanna be with family is out all times during this disease process. And I'm more also the former friend of funding research and really trying to. Make sure that we can ultimately cure this disease or ended sore vision is a world without alzheimer's so. We are committed to both things every day helping those families here now but also. Reminding ourselves that we do want a future without this disease. I was looking at your website and there's tons of information there is probably a great place to start if if you were or some in your life is is being affected by alzheimer's. Exactly there's a lot of online resource is that people can access that have information on communication strategies they can. Finds a local support groups that are happening in our area. And really just get connected and we always encourage people to do that sooner so that they can get support as soon as they need it rather than wait. And the USA is ails the double ORG that's correct that's an easy wonderment and kids yes but I'm not big. A lot of times we think of alzheimer's and dementia and is kind of the same thing but there are you tell me about the differences. He had I think it's so interesting because you hear people say wall mom has just a little bit of dementia. And dementia is a word that's actually an umbrella term that we used to describe cognitive impairment. So it's an umbrella term and alzheimer's disease follows this and falls under that umbrella. So alzheimer's diseases the most common form of dementia but there's other form users Louie body vascular dementia. So good. Almost like be seeing the word cancer like saying mom has cancer are not specifying which type of cancer whether that was breast cancer are. Pancreatic cancer could be mere out of types of cancer. So that's what they're really saying when they're saying dementia so it was like to make sure the public knows that. That makes sense yes so would do we know we need the causes of dementia and alzheimer's. All subs or really looking out right now Alzheimer's Association has really dedicated to looking. At all aspects. The disease what is causing him what could potentially prevent the disease as laws how to potentially stop that so. We do know that there are certain lifestyles. And that can help with their lowering the risk of dementia and so we're really looking at that right now to see what those correlations are. Gasol on the website that who the leading cause of alzheimer's is aging. Yes so so what a what are we do and I always pray there are aging aging is the largest risk factor. And when you think about it what's interesting with aging is out with other diseases we are able to be cancer we can. Overcome heart disease were living into an age now. Wearer you know blood pressure pills all these things were living longer and so it's putting us more higher risk for developing. Cognitive decline. So that is the number one risk factor. How prevalent is alzheimer's and dementia. It's a six leading cause of death in the United States. I'm to give you some exact numbers there are six point five million Americans currently living with alzheimer's today. And that within or again we have an estimated 65000. And people living with this disease over 65. And Washington and there's over a 1101000. So it's very prevalent and has just on the rise as the population. Ages. Does have to do with probably the baby boomer generation. Aging in rural living longer. Exactly add that population right now is an aging population which again is paying people more at risk for developing that disease. What are some of the warnings and to be looking out for. Yeah I definitely won't memory loss that does straps daily activities is the one of them hallmarks. Have alzheimer's disease and it's than most. Common sign pupil Paula talk about the there's several different time. Are signs of alzheimer's. And changes in mood and personality is a really big one. And difficulty completing familiar tasks so people always ask why you lose my keys. I was accused several times city to ballet you're able to sold retrace her steps and buying your keys and you know your keys do. So if you have a recipe that you made your entire life and you know inside and out as suddenly you're having heart timer calling back. Or maybe appointment say you've been doing. All the time your whole life. Going to church on Sundays you know regularly scheduled doctor's appointments of some of those things can be a sign that there is a potential problem. And then another important one is confusion awaits. Place or time. So people with alzheimer's or it's financial sometimes struggle at sense of time and passing of time and the years and so bout might be a problem for them so those are few signs. I'm though are on our website we have a great resource. I'm more people can learn about what we call our ten signs of alzheimer's. And they can find that at ALC dot org slash ten signs. Am looking at the ten signs and in some of them leaving your cave. They're just a normal part of aging right kind of forget things every now beginning in misplaced keys are sure exactly but these are these are in a little more serial quite a bit forced her out. Credit in our series again I always think of it in terms and disrupting daily activities so if you're. Out driving to the grocery store in new thing going in the same Hershey store. I'm since you've lived in this house and sent only you can't remember how to get home. And that's a pretty significant sign and quite a bit. More advancement. Simply forgetting where you left your keys this kind of a slow process is that correct. But it's yeah it's different for every person and how fast the progression hop and every brain as so different and I think that's what makes this disease. A struggle with in dealing with families and helping them prepare for it too because every person is so different how their brain is going to do. Manifest these symptoms and signs. The wanting to those reading that it's not. Only an older person's disease is that correct that's correct there is a small percentage of the population who has so we call. Younger on sat so valid piece and times. Showing prior to age of 65. So people as early as her thirties we've heard have. Displaying signs of alzheimer's disease back again that's a very small percentage of people. Most of it is about the age of sixty crime primarily of primarily 65 okay. So what are some of the things we can be doing to help lower the risk of of alzheimer's and dementia. Yeah definitely why Iran and always wants to know what they can do to help with says and I don't blame them it's a very scary disease. So we can't definitively say earring out anything yet fully prevents the disease but we do know that there's things we can do to help lower their risk. And so we do know are harm health directly impacts our brain health. And so how are saying that low. Lower blood pressure is really helpful staying physically fit and active having healthy lifestyle or eating your fruits and vegetables. I'm is really helpful because. Heart disease that can actually affect your brain and beer risk factor for developing alzheimer's later in life. So those things are really important and then things like staying socially engaged. And isolation Hopkins as people get older. And we know that its own terms for people are seeing gage and learning new things and keeping their brains active and kind of like the way we exercise our muscles you know taxes as your brain and staying involved is really helpful. Hey guys don't have a lot of friends well a couple of friends and made that do crossword puzzles the end New York Times cross for both liberty there I need to keep my brain healthy. Right doing that. Yes definitely and I think it's you know it's learning new things that we can continue to build connections are brain throughout our lives and that's really important as we age so that. And accused with alzheimer's where. You know the brain's braking down we want to have as many connections as possible to pull from when that happens and really it's all about making our brains and most resilient to. Warding off disease as possible just the way we do with our heart. And we are focusing our hot heart health we really wanna focus on our brain health and make it again resilient to disease. How you're. Our listeners able to help I'll Hilton's association with what can the things can we do. Everything you can quijano is we always need people to volunteer our support groups are. I'm done by trained volunteers that we work with and gave facilitate those across the entire chopped her. A lot of our educational programs are done by volunteers. There's always office work and I can be done so. I would tell people say get involved to volunteer. And then we have are locked in alzheimer's which is our signature fundraisers that we do for an organization and it occurs in over 600 communities across the country. And we have set then right here in Oregon and southwest Washington that people can get involved let. And a sister really great days have honor the people of past from the diseases currently living with that their caregivers. And really as a way for them to come together is community use their voice. And again Alton. All the services and Alzheimer's Association has provided. The walks really crave final into everything the organization's doing in terms of care support research and advocacy and I'm making sure our voices are heard form the public policies that things to. Talking today with cured Griffey you are he walked director. Yeah of the alzheimer's association of organ and selfless Washington Lisa you have seven walks coming up later in the summer. Yeah we do will be kicking off our largest with Portland whose that'll be August 26. They have a new location for and that's a will be starting other rose critter con ends. And then our next about all be in Vancouver on September 9 back Esther short park. So those will be the first two this season and then we have walks across the entire country as well sir you teams sign them up now. They are now we encourage you bullish sign up early get involved and how power they can't there is no registration fee for walks so it is completely free. To register but we do encourage people to make SL donation NN it asked their friends and painless for donations so. Well so that's really raise money is you get everybody together and give me. Ten bucks on the all do this why exactly. Actually and every little bit helps right. Exactly you know whole program last year raised over 89 million dollars for the cause. And that's huge because we think about funding research. And the fact that there are so many people here locally who needs a support service says to be able to provide that free for Sam raises huge. And so we can do without the funds raised and we do it collectively it's has a really huge impact do you any idea how much you make locally. Yeah has so last year we raised our 300000. We have a really big goal this year raising one point one million and while and that we know we can do it and it's it's going take everybody to do it how many people do the walk. You say there's seven opens there's an apple and all of its real seven we have over about over 6000 walkers. Across that entire region so it's really great day and it's. It's fun to see airlines spirit and energy surrounding a disease that so devastating. Pirelli. Seeing now hope factor in this disease that only to come together. We can do great things we can get that research and we always talk about that day when we'll have the first survivor on our walk. And my babble look like and how amazing now obese so we know we commuted generations that that's great. So how does the walked in bolts alzheimer's support the cause. How does support the cause eat so the funds that are raised through our power able to fire and our mission. And again really provide those free services to families again our 21 have our help line that people can access. And gets apart last our support groups and a lot of early stage programs that we do for people fighting the disease to focus on quality of living. All of those as well as the research side really making sure that were leading the scientific investigations. Have put an end to this disease and he association we are the largest prize that. Founder of alzheimer's research in the world's. And that public and the private sector where number three. I just behind the US federal government and the Chinese Government so it's really exciting to part of an organization and die is. Then part and scientific investigation and then at every single. Milestone with this disease generally elevating yet. To know what kind of research is being done out there. Yeah how we're really again committed to looking at everything and the Alzheimer's Association is wonderful out looking not only adds. I am to see prevention and fat ways that you can either stop in its tracks. And you know shrink the damage that's occurring essentially. And as well as. Figuring out you know if this the first and Dan is that tipped as the tip of the iceberg overseeing that. What can we do. Further back in time to try and stop it used earlier looking all things how to we prevent that what's causing at. How do we stop it once a star it's how can we completely get rid of it sorely looking at it from all angles which is really great stuff. What are some of the treatments for alzheimer's. So there's not that we can stage treats alzheimer's disease there are drugs on the market back helpless and Thames. And they generally focusing on the quality of living so. Chart is on the mark here right now really Hulk too. Just alleviate the sentence for people and help what their quality of life and they can sometimes work short term summons a work a little bit longer. There's nothing actually treats the disease as it is right now so that's one thing would hope to do in the future with research funding has find that tree. But not be great he has that the amazing now. So looking at the website and there's a whole page of of some myths about alzheimer's let's talk about those little bit yet at the very first one is says that memory loss is. Is a natural part of aging. Yes so that is exactly that is the met so alzheimer's disease and dementia that is not a normal part of aging. A healthy brain so look very similar. When you put and a scan at when he as it does and that when it's eighty an aging so. That's really interest yes so when you look at it you know you might be a little bit slower to react in. On those things I salute and a little bad that all in all the brains still intact and went alzheimer's disease. And the brain shrinking and everything that's going on with that it's not normal it's not healthy and there is a big misconception and and the public still that will moms just a little senile. So we really need a break down those myths because that really helps elevate the cause it helps elevate their urgency to. Fine cured and that cult action and. So if mom is. Feeling a little scene there are acting a little senile and in little forgetful and should be her to a doctor. I would say it. Definitely look at our note attend science and keep track of those document it. And if you're concerned absolutely bring that up with a primary care physician. And they'll wanna see patterns of those types of behaviors so that's the most helpful is going in with. Actual. Counts of things happening. And and being able to talk about those instances very specifically with your doctor could bat early detection is huge because. There's a lot of support that we consult offer families in those early stages so. If people are concerned for themselves or loved one I would say definitely start barking up the signs then. I'm asking questions. That's good that's good good advice it is a myth number two says alzheimer's disease is not fatal. Yes that is not true and that that is probably one of the biggest myths that I see when I'm out in the community. Alzheimer's disease absolutely is fetal. And again it is the sixth leading causes death in the United States. And one in three seniors actually dies with alzheimer's or a form of dementia. And so. It is Beatles and it's not just forgetting what shoe goes on much for our simple things like that it's it's it's serious disease. How is it fatal. So it's fatal because. That brain eventually. Schools shut down and places that. Essentially tells us how to breathe and swallow. And all of those things that people pass from the disease for reasons. Before that potentially from wandering friends and sore. Maybe it's and forgetting to take your medication and back it happened. Ultimately and that and the NY makes it fatal is that breaking down and then brain just can't function anymore to do volunteers responses. Another man there is is that have the connection between alzheimer's and aluminum. Talk yes yeah you'll feel a lot of times on the Internet. That it's certain things do you cause alzheimer's or stirring things actually do you prevent it. And a association were really trying to find evidence based scientific studies. That can support fully or disprove his. Myths out there are so just because there's information that you eat this or drink says in this causes says. I'm I would say be very cautious and rematch Interfax. Look at our website out calls dot org because we have a lot of information and that. Shows where I admiration coming from and how to properly address and information. So I would say. Just be careful what you read because in most cases there's not enough science behind it to prove or disprove that. Have people been very concerned about aluminum cookware yet or who aluminum soda cans or aluminum in Europe and keepers for deodorant exactly everything kind of we need to read up on that. Exactly and we need more evidence about that too and again and that's why researchers so important because if there is a correlation and you know it's gonna need a lot further investigation thus far we can definitively say one thing or the other and now let aspartame. Aspartame probably the same thing yeah. What exactly anything you read I mean there was a whole thing for awhile about coconut oil and you start eating coconut oil it'll get rid of dementia our. Earlier those things and see them on the Internet and again. I think with the disease that has no survivors we wanna be hopeful we want to believe some thing. Will ultimately help says sore or we can get at the root cause of it but again that's gonna take time it's gonna take. Advancing research to be able to showcase those correlations. And probably another one bit that this is going to be a big one is yes -- people think flu shots may be a cause rates. So that and again a flu so strongly I get one every year there probably are very important things yet right. A great way to people can help support feel terms association is to participate in one of the walks right yes you can walk chair tell us about the walks against. And so again we have 73 row orient in south Los Washington. And it's an amazing day. I would say whether your one hour 100 you can come out and enjoy this great mandate and it's more than just an events we have like music we have good. I'm and one of my fear aspects of the walking is our mission focus promise card and and so are unlocked air through walker will receive a pin will flower Arab presents their different reason for walking so. Blue is for people currently living with alzheimer's disease. Orange is for it. Those is it for a world without alzheimer's. Yellows for our current caregivers. And purple is for those walking in honor of a local in his past. And so each firs thing gets one of these flowers they can purse size that and they can have this moment where they remember why they're walking. And during opening ceremony it's really beautiful will have people representing each collar and the hold them up. And together they equal our promise card and our promises for why we're doing this and who were walking for. And then at the end of the loch they'll actually be planted in the garden so when people come back through. They can find there flour and reconnect with the missions and it's very powerful legs. We want to add a white flowers some dates you're promised start and for the first survivor. Very nice and I can visit our its claim for help line at 800. 2723900. And they can get all the information they need about the association volunteer opportunities. Awesome there's always somebody else there to help exactly I mean. This has been great thanks for being on the show thank you so much for having us have been talking big carrot Griffey walked director with the Alzheimer's Association the Oregon and southwest Washington. Do you. Mitchell's go fees and Entercom radio Portland public affairs program. I'm Gary blocks and if you're involved with a nonprofit or public affairs organization force you have an idea for an upcoming show I'd like to hear from you. This is a microscope PDX dot com and submit your ideas you can also go to the station's website can submit your information there. Thanks for listening to metals gold and enjoy the rest of your weekend.