Memory Matters Utah provides early stage memory loss intervention course

ST. GEORGE Memory Matters Utah is offering a 10-week course, beginning Sept. 13 that will benefit those with an early stage memory loss or dementia diagnosis and their care partners. A group of local professionals will provide the tools and resources necessary to participants as they face the challenge of a memory loss illness.

Participants in a Memory Matters course enjoy a colorful parachute activity, location and date not specified | Photo courtesy of Memory Matters Utah, St. George News
Participants in a Memory Matters course enjoy a colorful parachute activity, location and date not specified | Photo courtesy of Memory Matters Utah, St. George News

“There are seven stages of dementia,” LuAnn Lundquist, Memory Matters Utah Founder and Director, said. “The first one is where the disease process is evident in brain pathology, but few symptoms are evident. Stages two through four are very important stages to recognize and then become active to maintain brain health as well as making preparations and decisions for the future. After stage four, many of those opportunities are limited.”

The classes will promote brain health and help participants plan for the future. This 10-week course is meant to aid the person with memory loss and their primary care partner. Professionals in the community will present on matters of importance to the group and provide connections to available resources. These include presentations on legal and financial preparation, pharmaceutical and alternative remedies, brain health and nutrition. For the second hour the participants may attend either a cognitive training group or a care partner training and support group.

“Clients that are proactive in their health are the ones that usually sign up for this intervention. We have seen a lot of success with those who attend this course,” Lundquist said. “Alzheimer’s and dementia can seem overwhelming, but with this course our clients walk away feeling better prepared and empowered to face the future.”

Symptoms of memory loss can be caused by reversible conditions. It is important to quickly see a doctor to rule out those conditions. If the diagnosis is an illness, such as Alzheimer’s disease, there are things that can be done in the early stages to help the person function better and function longer. There are also proactive decisions that give voice to the person with memory loss in the future. It is important to face this life event early. Being in denial during the early stages can cause a family to miss opportunities to improve the situation.

The Early Stage Memory Loss Classes will be held every Tuesday for ten weeks, beginning Sept. 13. This event is co-sponsored by the St. George Library and 3 Corners Women’s Giving Circle, and Five County Area Agency on Aging. Please contact Memory Matters Utah at 435-319-0407 or email memorymattersutah@gmail.com to register and for more information.

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