Over the next 18 years the baby boomer tidal wave will reach the shores of retirement. Add to that the fact that people over 85 are now the fastest-growing segment of the population, and the result is that by 2050, the number of Americans 85 years and older will quadruple.
Total healthcare costs are more than three times higher for people with Alzheimer's Disease and other dementias than for other people age 65 and older, according to the 2010 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures, published by the Alzheimer's Association.
According the Facts and Figures report, in 2006:
• Medicare beneficiaries with diabetes plus Alzheimer's or another dementia had 64 percent more hospital stays than those with diabetes and no Alzheimer's, and their average per person Medicare costs were $20,655 compared to $12,979 for beneficiaries with diabetes but no Alzheimer's or dementia.
• Medicare beneficiaries with coronary heart disease and Alzheimer's disease or another dementia had 42 percent more hospital stays than those with coronary heart disease and no Alzheimer's or dementia, and their average per person Medicare costs were $20,780 compared to $14,640 for beneficiaries with coronary heart disease but no Alzheimer's or dementia.
• With family members providing care at home for about 70 percent of people with Alzheimer's disease, the ripple effects of the disease can be felt throughout the entire family. According to Facts and Figures, in 2008, nearly 10 million Alzheimer caregivers in the U.S. provided 8.5 billion hours of unpaid care valued at $94 billion. In addition to the unpaid care families contribute, the report also reveals that Alzheimer's creates high out-of-pocket health and long-term care expenses for families.
Growing prevalence of Alzheimer's Disease and dementia
• There are 5.3 million Americans living with the disease and every 70 seconds someone in America develops Alzheimer's Disease. By mid-century someone will develop Alzheimer's every 33 seconds. By 2050 there will be nearly a million new cases per year.
• Alzheimer's is the sixth leading cause of death in the country, surpassing diabetes; it is the fifth leading cause of death among individuals 65 and older.
From 2000 to 2006, while deaths from other major diseases dropped -
> heart disease (-11.5 percent),
> breast cancer (-.6 percent),
> prostate cancer (-14.3 percent) and
> stroke (-18.1 percent) -
deaths from Alzheimer's disease rose 47.1 percent.
Two innovative organizations fight back
The Heritage of Green Hills (http://www.HeritageOfGreenHills.com/
Super Noggin (http://www.SuperNoggin.org) is a brain fitness program for those who want to stay mentally sharp throughout life. It is designed to maintain and even improve brain fitness, but following the program also contributes to good physical health - a bonus! It's the first cognitive fitness program to integrate live classes, advice on computer programs, and behavioral changes (namely sleep and diet) to promote healthier brain fitness.
The components of the program promote cognitive challenges, physical exercise, good nutrition, social interaction, stress reduction, and personal reflection. Super Noggin is compatible with the wellness model of the ICAA (International Council on Active Aging).
"We're honored to be the first retirement community in the country offering Super Noggin," exclaims Chris, "we know it will make a huge difference in the quality of the lives of our residents. Our Well By Design staff members are among the first in the nation to be Certified … and now they can lead groups in maximizing their brain fitness throughout the year. That’s exciting! "
Super Noggin Class An Overwhelming Success
On July 1st the Super Noggin team led a packed room of more than 70 Heritage residents, ages 55 to 88, in a Super Noggin class titled, "Ten Steps To Brain Fitness." But Super Noggin is more than just classes; it’s about making lifestyle changes that can dramatically improve life.
Super Noggin (http://www.SuperNoggin.org)
Super Noggin includes:
• educational and motivational workshops
• brain exercises to stimulate cognitive functions
• a year-long schedule of individual and group activities to keep your brain fit
individual tracking of progress toward a healthier lifestyle
About The Heritage of Green Hills (http://
Ideally located in a country-setting on 78 wooded acres near Reading's Flying Hills neighborhood, this full-service retirement community has been designed to allow active seniors, ages 55 and up, the freedom to bring their retirement plans to life. In addition to maintenance-
This incredible maintenance-
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TR Mann Consulting (http://www.TRMann.com)