Tempe class offers window into dementia

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A Tempe class puts participants in dark rooms with gloves and ear muffs on to simulate dulled senses to understand what dementia patients go through. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A Tempe class puts participants in dark rooms with gloves and ear muffs on to simulate dulled senses to understand what dementia patients go through. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Participants wear gloves while doing simple tasks to get the feel of what dementia and Alzheimer's patients experience. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Participants wear gloves while doing simple tasks to get the feel of what dementia and Alzheimer's patients experience. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
A participant prepares for Tempe's Alzheimer's and dementia experience class. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A participant prepares for Tempe's Alzheimer's and dementia experience class. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

It is hard for many of us to really wrap our minds around the idea of having dementia or losing our memory.

But the City of Tempe is working hard to teach people more about the disease that one in nine people over the age of 65 have.

Emergency crews get special training in Tempe and residents have lots of resources to help them or a family member dealing with Alzheimer's and dementia.

[RELATED: Dementia Walk helps caregivers relate to loved ones]

This is all done through a partnership with the banner Alzheimer's institute.

One class is the virtual dementia tour.

[SPECIAL SECTION: CBS 5 This Morning]

It lets people experience life through the eyes of someone with dementia-related diseases.

During the tour, a participant is given several tasks, but each must be done with muted or altered senses. Participants will wear gloves or ear muffs or complete the task in low lighting to mimic dulled senses.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Life with Alzheimer's]

Instructor Jane Gerlica with the Banner Alzheimer's Institute said this virtual tour gives people a better idea of what their family member is dealing with on a day to day basis.

"They feel a little more understanding and empathetic to the loved one who might have dementia," she said. "They walk away with a bit more kindness."

Tempe earned the title of dementia friendly city, the only city of its kind in the state.

To find out more about how you can get involved with Tempe's classes, check out their schedule here.

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Copyright 2018 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


Ian SchwartzAn Arizona native, born and raised in Mesa, and graduate of Arizona State University, Ian Schwartz is thrilled to be back in the Valley of the Sun.

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Ian Schwartz
Wake Up Meteorologist

After starting his journalism career in Illinois, Ian worked in Albuquerque and later Sacramento. In the field as a reporter, he has covered flash floods, blizzards, tornadoes, wildfires, drought and just about everything the weather can offer. After spending some time reporting, Ian decided to further his education and completed Mississippi State's broadcast meteorology program. Ian loves everything about Arizona weather from winter storms in the north to the monsoon in the south. When Ian isn't giving you the forecast in the morning, you can find him hiking, traveling and exploring everything our great state has to offer. If you have any weather pictures or want to say hi, drop him an email or connect online.

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