It is World Alzheimer's Day today while the condition's burden on our country is only increasing, Alzheimer's awareness is very little and the reason this lack of awareness becomes the problem is that caregivers and people around the patient have a significant role to play. More than the medicines it is the caregivers that can help manage the neurological condition well. However, spreading awareness about a health complication is a task easier said than done and only happens gradually. Movies are a great way to explain disease and help spread awareness about it. The use of the audio-visual medium to connect to the people helps explain a disease way better and is inclusive of vernaculars. World Alzheimer’s Day 2018: 5 Myths about The Commonest Form of Dementia.
While there are quite a few English classics that explain Alzheimer's like Still Alice, The Notebook, On Golden Pond. There is still a lack of Hindi movies that depict the condition. However, if you want to understand Alzheimer's via Hindi Movies, here are few movies that depict the condition.
- Black- A critically-acclaimed movie that came in the year 2005 starring Amitabh Bachchan and Rani Mukherji. The film revolves around Rani Mukherji and her multiple challenges. Amitabh Bachchan's plays a teacher who later develops Alzheimer’s Disease. Some really amazing scenes of Amitabh dealing with confusion/ disorientation that are related to the disease. While the depiction of the condition is only limited, it still is a good watch.
- U, Me Aur Hum-Released in the year 2005 this love story stars Kajol and Ajay Devgan. Kajol and Ajay marry and have a baby. Kajol's episodes keep happening and get so severe that it almost kills her baby. While it depicts the disease, it inevitably fails to portray the day-to-day problems it brings along. It also kind of shows that the husband love can win the illness which isn't the case practically. Skinny Fat People May Be At Risk of Alzheimer's Disease, Says Study
- Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Maara- The main character of the film is of Anupam Kher's, a retired Hindi professor called Uttam Chaudhary. He develops dementia, and the film portrays the various signs and symptoms like changed behaviour and how the disease affects the family and their struggles to cope. The movie depicts the initial symptoms amazingly and even does a terrific job in explaining the problems faced by the family.
- Mai- One of the best movies to watch if you want to see the life of an AD patient and the caregiver. A family drama that shows Asha Bhosle play the role of a mother with Alzheimer’s Disease, and her daughter Padmini Kolhapure looks after her mother. Involving a lot of family conflicts and drama Mai also shows a range of changed behaviour typically seen in someone with Alzheimer's, such as wandering, confusion etc. There is also a scene involving a doctor speaking about diagnosis and symptoms.
- Listen…Amaya- Starring Farooq Shaikh, Deepti Naval and Swara Bhaskar this movie revolves around a book that two of the main characters work on. About the end of the movie, a character in the movie begins to develop strange behaviour and episodes take place that depicts the early signs of dementia.
I believe more movies should be made about this form of Dementia to talk about the several aspects related to this disease. The burden of this disease is only increasing in our country. A study says, 'Approximately 10% of persons over age 70 years have significant memory loss, and more than half of these individuals have Alzheimer's Disease. An estimated 25%-45% of persons over age 85 years have dementia. The incidence of AD rises from 2.8 per 1,000 person-years in the 65-69 year age group to 56.1 per 1,000 person-years in the older than 90 year age group.' Removing ‘Zombie’ Cells Helps Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease in Mice
(Reference: Alzheimer Disease Overview)