This week (20–26 May) is Dementia Action Week, where we raise awareness about the condition and push to find a cure.
There are currently 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK, a number that is set to rise to over 1 million by 2025.
Every year, an additional 225,000 people are diagnosed, equating to one person every three minutes.
It mostly affects people over the age of 65, however over 40,000 under 65 have received a dementia diagnosis.
WHAT IS DEMENTIA?
Dementia is a series of symptoms related to the decline in brain function.
Symptoms may include problems with:
- memory loss
- thinking speed
- mental sharpness
- difficulty carrying out everyday tasks
DEMENTIA ACTION WEEK
This year, Dementia Action Week is urging people to start a conversation with someone they know who has dementia.
Two thirds of people who have dementia report feeling lonely or isolated, and a simple conversation can be all it takes to improve their situation.
It can sometimes be difficult to know what to say to someone who has dementia, but the Alzheimer’s Society has advice for starting and maintaining conversations.
Advice includes being yourself, smiling lots and being patient.
With more and more research being done into dementia, and with so many of us knowing someone who has the condition, dementia awareness has never been higher.
Just this month, the BBC launched Our Dementia Choir with Vicky McClure, in which actress Vicky McClure brings together people living with dementia to sing and investigate the impact that music has on the condition.
Alzheimer’s Society also runs Cupcake Day to raise money for dementia research. This year, Rahul from The Great British Bake Off is urging everyone to get involved and get tucked into a tasty treat in aid of dementia awareness.
Whether you’re having a cupcake, watching Our Dementia Choir or having a simple conversation, there are plenty of ways to raise awareness this Dementia Awareness Week, that will make a difference to those with dementia.