Dementia cases are on the rise
KNOWLEDGE of dementia is on the rise but a new study has found people are finding it difficult to support or communicate with someone living with the disease.
This comes as updated figures reveal there are more than 436,000 Australians now living with dementia – estimated to be more than 250 new cases every day.
This number is projected to increase to 590,000 in just 10 years and almost 1.1 million by 2058.
In the federal electorates of Blair and Wright, there are an estimated 4929 people living with dementia this year, which is expected to increase to 7359 by 2028 and 14,985 by 2058 respectively.
The survey was released to coincide with World Alzheimer’s Day on Friday.
Dementia Australia CEO Maree Mccabe said one of the biggest issues people faced following a diagnosis of dementia was social isolation, as friends, family and their community struggled to understand how to best support and continue to include people living with the disease.
“Dementia can be one of the most profoundly isolating conditions, despite the fact it is impacting so many people,” Ms Mccabe said.
“What has been heartening to see, though, is that 80 per cent of people surveyed had heard of dementia and, of those people, a further three in four people were able to correctly identify basic facts about dementia.
“Despite this knowledge, it is concerning that four out of five people surveyed believe that others feel uncomfortable around people with dementia and two in three believe that individuals have a negative perception of people with dementia.
“When we explored this further in the survey, it really came down to people saying they just weren’t sure how to talk to someone with dementia.”