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World Alzheimer’s Day

Today (21st September) marks the 6th global World Alzheimer’s Day. This year’s theme of ‘Remember me’ highlights the importance of early detection and diagnosis of dementia. 2 out of every 3 people globally believe there is little or no understanding of dementia in their countries. The impact of World Alzheimer’s Month is growing, but the stigmatisation and misinformation that surrounds dementia remains a global problem, that requires global action.

Dementia is often hidden away, not spoken about, or ignored at a time when the person living with dementia and their family carers are most in need of support within their families, friendship groups and communities.

The social stigma is the consequence of a lack of knowledge about dementia and it can have numerous long- and short-term effects, including:

  • Dehumanisation of the person with dementia
  • Strain within families and friendships
  • A lack of sufficient care for people with dementia and their carers
  • A lower rate of diagnosis of dementia
  • Delayed diagnosis and support

The stigmatisation of dementia is a global problem and it is clear that the less we talk about dementia, the more the stigma will grow. By learning about dementia you can play your part in reducing the stigma and improve the lives of people with dementia and their carers in your community.

Alzheimers New Zealand estimated that by 2050 more than 170,000 Kiwis will be living with dementia. The total cost of dementia to New Zealand is around $1.7billion and is estimated to reach around $5billion by 2050.

Facts about Dementia:

  • Dementia is a term used to describe different brain disorders that affect memory, thinking, behaviour and emotion.
  • Early symptoms of dementia can include memory loss, difficultly performing familiar tasks, problems with language and changes in personality.
  • There is currently no cure for dementia, but a range of support is available for people with dementia and their carers.
  • Dementia knows no social, economic, or ethnic boundaries.
  • Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia. Other causes include vascular disease, dementia with Lewy bodies and fronto-temporal dementia.
  • There are currently estimated to be over 46 million people worldwide living with dementia. The number of people affected is set to rise to over 131 million by 2050.
  • There is one new case of dementia worldwide every three seconds.
  • The worldwide costs of dementia are estimated at US$818 billion. As a result, if dementia care were a country, it would be the world’s 18th largest economy. If it were a company, it would be the world’s largest by annual revenue exceeding Apple (US $742 billion) and Google (US $368 billion).

Visit your local Alzheimer’s and Dementia group to see what is going on in your community to raise awareness.

About Eve Williams

Eve Williams
Eve Williams is the Sales, Production and Social Media Administrator for Eldernet. She has been working for Eldernet for a number of years on a casual basis but is very excited to grow in her new full time role within the company. A recent graduate of Canterbury University with a degree in Psychology and History, her interests span far and wide.

One comment

  1. Thank you Eve, it’s a good thing to raise awareness of this debilitating condition.

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