CALABASAS HILLS, Calif. The ALS Association is encouraging caregivers to voice their concerns about their own health as well as the people who require their help around the clock during National Family Caregivers Month in November.
The theme of National Family Caregivers Month is "SpeakUp." The ALS Association encourages caregivers to speak up and improve their lives.
"Most caregivers do not have the time to ask for help because they are too busy meeting the needs of others," said Sharon Matland, association vice president of patient services. "It is our responsibility as an organization to be extra diligent in reaching out to them."
As part of National Family Caregivers Month, the group is launching "Show You Care," a national campaign to recognize some of the thousands of local primary caregivers critical to protecting and enhancing the quality of life for individuals living with ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The daily challenges faced by caregivers, whose own health is adversely affected by providing care on a round-the-clock basis, will be detailed in a series of profiles featured on the association's Web site.
ALS causes the progressive death of the motor nerve cells that operate muscles, robbing the brain of its ability to initiate and control movement. Approximately 30,000 Americans have the disease, for which there is no effective treatment or cure, and can expect to survive on average two to five years from the time of diagnosis.
The ALS Association is the only non-profit organization fighting Lou Gehrig's Disease on every front. By leading the way in global research, providing assistance for people with ALS through a nationwide network of chapters, coordinating multidisciplinary care through certified clinical care centers, and fostering government partnerships, the association builds hope and enhances quality of life while aggressively searching for new treatments and a cure.
For more information about the association, visit the group's Web site at (www.alsa.org) or call 1-800-782-4747.