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The Alzheimer’s and Related Society of India (ARDSI), greater Mumbai chapter, is conducting several awareness programmes in the city throughout September, which is officially known as the World Alzheimer’s month.

September 21 is World Alzheimer’s Day.

Many senior citizens suffering from Alzheimer’s disease have the habit of going out of their homes and they never come back. Unfortunately, the number of such cases is on the rise, primarily due to lack of awareness about the disease.

Aarogya news

"Wandering is common in Alzheimer’s; but unfortunately, many people in India still think it’s a ‘Western’ disease. The fortunate ones are found within two–three days, but after 10–15 days, especially if the person boards a train or bus, finding him/her becomes very difficult. In such cases, social networking tools play a huge role," said Shailesh Mishra, general secretary, ARDSI.

Mishra, also the founder of Silver Innings, an NGO for senior citizens, has started a first–of–its–kind blog and a Facebook page called Missing Senior Citizen Alert, so that people can post the details and pictures of their lost relatives, apart from lodging a missing complaint with the police.

On an average, at least 3 to 3.5 percent of the elderly population suffer from some form of dementia. In Mumbai, around 42,000 people suffer from some or the other form of dementia.

Emminent psychiatrist Dr Yusuf Matcheswalla said a supportive family is the best for people suffering from Alzheimer’s.

DNA India
21 Sep 2013

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