Figures show there are more than 425,000 people living with dementia in Australia with an estimated 250 people developing dementia each day, which is expected to soar to 536,000 people by 2025 and more than 1.1 million people by 2056.
These statistics are prompting calls for the individuals, families and carers impacted to turn to Dementia Australia and access support that can empower them to live well.
Dementia Australia Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Maree McCabe said while there is no cure for dementia, which is the second leading cause of death of Australians and the leading cause of death among Australian women, the right support, information and help can make a life-changing difference to people living with the condition.
“There is a perception in the community that nothing can be done following a diagnosis of dementia,” Ms McCabe said.
“However, it is vital people understand the right support can make the world of difference to everyone impacted by dementia.”
“Good support and services can help people cope better with the uncertainty and changes that come with dementia. One significant issue Dementia Australia staff often hear following a diagnosis of dementia is how isolating it can be, which can be devastating and debilitating,” she said.
“However, the right services can help people reconnect and re-establish relationships with partners, families and friends which can be so important for their emotional well-being. Social engagement and keeping physically and mentally active are also key in contributing to better health and lifestyle outcomes following a diagnosis of dementia.”
Ms McCabe said support services at the early stage following a diagnosis are also essential.
“They enable people to better understand the condition, which helps prepare for the changes that will inevitably come. They can also help people re-engage with life,” Ms McCabe said.
“Dementia Australia – the new voice of Alzheimer’s Australia - has delivered services to more than 1.5 million people living with dementia, their families and carers from across the country over the past 10 years alone – and to many, many more since the organisation started more than 35 years ago.
“Having a trusted, independent source of information people can turn to means that no matter what stage people are at we can assist.
“We are encouraging people to turn to Dementia Australia for support, information, counselling and education. We can also put people in touch with other organisations and partners providing great services across the country,’ Ms McCabe said.
Dementia Australia provides essential, expert advice and support services for people living with dementia providing integrated support from pre-diagnosis right through to end-of-life.
To contact Dementia Australia, call the National Dementia Helpline on 1800 100 500 or go to www.dementia.org.au.