WHAT IS DEMENTIA?

Dementia facts and figures

Dementia is a group of symptoms affecting the brain. The sufferer experiences a progressive decline of mental abilities. In particular, loss of memory accompanied by changes in personality and behaviour.

The symptom of dementia can arise from certain diseases, the most common being Alzheimers disease, whilst vascular dementia, Lewy body dementia and Frontal Lobe dementia are responsible for most other causes of dementia (15-20% in each case) (4, 5).

There are approximately 800,000 people in the UK with dementia. According to the Alzheimer’s Society, 1 in 3 people over the age of 65 will develop dementia and 2/3 of those affected are women. Dementia can affect younger people too. There are approximately 17,000 people in the UK under the age of 65 who have dementia (1, 2, 3).

Research has shown that 50% of all adults will need long-term care at some stage as there dementia progresses. Dementia is a huge challenge for patients, care providers and relatives.

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References

  1. Alzheimer’s Society (2013) About Alzheimer’s Disease & Dementia www.alzheimers.org.uk
  2. Alzheimer’s Association (2013) Alzheimer’s Disease & Dementia www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_what_is_alzheimers.asp
  3. NHS Choice (2011) Alzheimer’s Disease & Dementia www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Alzheimers-disease
  4. Family Practice Notebook (2013) Dementia www.fpnotebook.com
  5. Alzheimer’s Research UK (2012) www.alzheimersresearchuk.org/dementia-information.aspx