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All things Dementia

In 2022 it's estimated that 487,500 Australians are living with dementia. Without any medical breakthrough that number is expected to increase to almost 1.1 million by 2058.

It's estimated that almost 1.6 million Australians are involved in the care of someone living with dementia. It is the second leading cause of death for Australians and the leading cause of death for women.

This is why its imperative that as a community we better understand what dementia is, the signs and symptoms of dementia and how we can support loved ones who may live with dementia.

Dementia is the umbrella term for a number of neurological conditions with which the major symptom is global decline in brain function. The three most prominent forms of dementia are:

  1. Alzheimers - makes up 70% of all dementia cases and is defined by the shrinkage of brain tissue and gradual cognitive decline

  2. Vascular - caused by a health episode with loss of blood flow to the brain e.g. stroke

  3. Lewy Body - commonly recognised by hallucinations, delusions and mood swings

Diagnosing what type of dementia the individual is experiencing is important to understanding the progression of the illness, accessing appropriate supports (including medications) and preparing family/friends for what the expect.

Dementia Australia and Dementia Support Australia provide fantastic resources for families and loved ones to access. These can be found at:

Dementia Australia - or 1800 100 500

Dementia Support Australia - or 1800 699 799

More information can be found in episode 13 of The Truth About Ageing podcast.

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