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Alzheimer's Disease numbers likely to double in coming years

READ MORE: Alzheimer's Disease numbers likely to double in coming years
More than 5,000,000 Americans have Alzheimer's, but as the baby boomers age, that number is expected to double. WWAY spoke with a local woman who is trying to balance work, raising a family and caring for her mother with Alzheimer's. Experts say this type of lifestyle is becoming more and more common, and help is harder Five years ago, Diane Morrissey's life changed. Her mother, Nable Debruyn, was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. "Initially it was just the forgetfulness, not realizing what was going on, kind of losing track of time. Getting old losing your memory, so called senior moments, is when you forget where you put your keys, but when you find your keys and don't know what to do with them, that's a sign of a problems," said Morissey. The disease gradually got worse. "It's like having a little child, where you're getting them up, you're telling them what to do, they have to eat then, you have to remind them to go up and get dressed, lay out their clothes, it's an all day thing," said Morissey. Since Diane's family had no history of Alzheimer's, her mom's diagnosis caught her off guard. Morissey said, "There's no way of telling who it's going to effect, or when it's going to start, and in my mom's case, she was older when it started. Some people start much younger, in their 50s, where they can't remember anybody." Social worker, Gayle Ginsberg said there are ways to delay the disease. "Walking the part of your brain that effects walking is the part that effects Alzheimer's disease, so walk, walk as much as you can. Play mind games like bridge or scrabble. Keep your mind constantly engaged," said Ginsberg. [duration:0:17] Another issue with Alzheimer's is that there are not enough caregivers, and as baby boomers age there will be more people diagnosed with the disease, and the need for caregivers will increase. Caregivers hope more people will get into the healthcare profession to help the aging baby boomers and perhaps even find a cure for Alzheimer's. If you would like more information on Alzheimer's, you can call the New Hanover County Senior Center at 910-798-6402.

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dementia numbers rising

You can decrease your chance of getting Alzheimer's disease or a related dementia right now by eating right, not smoking and keeping mentally and physically active. Even if someone already has Alzheimer's diseas or another dementia, these practices help slow down the decline associated with these diseases by Susan Berg author of Adorable Photographs of Our Baby-Meaningful Mind Stimulating Activities and More for the Memory Challenged, Their Loved Ones and Involved Professionals a book for those with dementia and an excellent resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals.