Alzheimer’s and Dementia affects 47 million people worldwide and that number is expected to explode to 75 million by 2030.
The cost of caring for patients is in the hundreds of billions, not to mention the stress on families who to try and care for their loved ones.
But a new treatment center that’s just opening near San Diego, California may help both patients and families deal with the devastating disease in a very unique way.
This is just the beginning of a project that plans to go global.
The time was circa 1950s, when Thunderbirds cruised the streets, diners served up 25 cent hot dogs and movie theaters still played black and white films.
That was then - and it's now too, here at Glenner Town Square. It’s a full scale, functional replica of a typical town from the 1950s.
But this isn’t a Hollywood set. Town Square is the first immersive treatment center of its kind for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients using reminiscence therapy, a treatment that taps into long term memory, which often stays very sharp unlike short term memory.
That’s the case for Sonia Bland’s mother who has struggled with Alzheimer’s for nearly seven years.
“Being with mom everyday I notice that long term memory is very sharp,” Sonia says.
"So this is going to be awesome, awesome. Her short term memory is not there anymore so this is going to make a huge difference in mom’s life and in our lives.”