- It’s okay to identify as disabled: Zoe
- Basketball, photography and more: How Charlie’s life ‘restarted’ through Mable
- Paralympics, arts and more: How Nick does what he loves with Mable
- Reviewing cafes for accessibility: How Ashlee is pursuing her passion
- Guitar, martial arts, yoga: Skills Nissa is learning with support through Mable
Sign up to have the latest news, articles and resources delivered to your inbox.
Dementia Action Week 2022 will be held 19-25 September and includes World Alzheimer’s Day 2022 on 21 September. This year the campaign is called A little support makes a big difference.
What is dementia?
Dementia isn’t a singular disease but rather a collection of symptoms affecting the brain.
The most common types of dementia are Alzheimer’s disease, Vascular dementia, Lewy body disease and Frontotemporal dementia, but it’s important to note that no two people experience dementia in the same way.
Warning signs of dementia include, but are not limited to, memory loss, confusion about time and place, problem-solving difficulties, changes in mood and personality as well as a decline in social skills, rational thinking and physical functioning.
9 things you may not know about dementia
Dementia is not part of the ageing process
People of any age can get dementia as it is caused by diseases that affect the brain. When it occurs in those younger than 65, it is called ‘younger onset dementia’, although it is most prevalent in those over 65 years.
One in 10 people over age 65 and three in 10 over age 85 are living with dementia.
Most people who have it live in the community
70% of those with dementia are living in the community – that is, they are not residing in residential care. With the right support in place, this may be an option for you or your loved one who has dementia.
Find out how a dementia-trained support worker with Mable can help.
We need to end discrimination against people living with dementia
According to a survey by Dementia Australia, the majority of respondents with dementia (63%) believe discrimination against them is common or very common. And 73% of their family, friends and support workers also agreed, highlighting the need for more community awareness and understanding of cognitive conditions.
An active and fulfilling life with dementia is possible
With the right support in place, those living with dementia can lead an active and engaged life for many years after their initial diagnoses. When a person is enabled to access the things that bring them joy – for instance going on outings – wellbeing is maintained. Independent support workers on Mable can play a significant role in making this happen.
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia
There are over 100 different brain diseases which can lead to dementia. In Australia, Alzheimer’s disease accounts for about two thirds of dementia cases (see FAQs). More women than men develop Alzheimer’s disease.
More support workers with dementia training are needed
According to projections in the Economic Cost of Dementia in Australia report, by 2036 over 362,930 support workers will be needed to assist those with dementia in the community. By 2056, this will be around 525,540. Support workers with dementia training will be even more in demand.
Medical advancements give hope
Research into the causes, treatment and risk reduction of dementia is happening all the time. While there is still no cure, scientists continue to make small breakthroughs which give hope. For instance, a new study published in the American Geriatrics Society journal suggests lifestyle modification intervention may help to improve cognition in older adults experiencing cognitive decline, and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
We need to reverse the social isolation problem
A Dementia Australia survey found 74% of people living with dementia said people no longer keep in touch with them like they used to. Encouraging friends of a person with dementia to pick up the phone is a simple way to help them stay socially connected.
You can also engage support workers through Mable to provide them with social support, companionship and assistance with community participation.
Carers need taking care of too
There are around 1.6 million people involved in supporting those with dementia. These include family members, such as a spouse, sibling or a child. It is important that these people are supported too, as carer burn out can lead to stress, fatigue and depression.
Through Mable, you can book respite support workers who can give carers a much-needed break.
Ways to help a person with dementia
There are small yet effecting things we can all do that have a big impact on the life of the person:
- Make home a safe, comfortable environment for them with a few smart changes
- Listen to them, and be patient
- Give them time to articulate their thoughts
- Use clever technology to make their life easier
- Help them plan their own social life.
- Encourage them to stay active and healthy.
Learn more about dementia and how you can use your home care package funding to book dementia support on Mable.