There is a common self-fulfilling misconception that “Life ends when dementia begins”. A survey of GPs concerning patients suspecting / fearing that they could have dementia, conducted by the Alzheimer’s Society, reveals that more than half of such people may have been inclined to delay consulting their GP and seeking a diagnosis by at least a year.
The charity hopes to dispel the various myths and stigma surrounding dementia, with a view to encouraging people to obtain an earlier diagnosis and get suitable treatment. Once diagnosed, people are thought to be better able to plan for the future and more fully enabled to live well and independently with the condition for as long as possible.
“Too many people are in the dark about dementia – many feel that a dementia diagnosis means someone is immediately incapable of living a normal life, while myths and misunderstandings continue to contribute to the stigma and isolation that many people will feel”. Jeremy Hughes, Chief Executive of the Alzheimer’s Society.
Too many delay seeking dementia diagnosis, charity says. London: BBC Health News, May 16th 2016.
This relates to:
Over half of people fear dementia diagnosis, 62% think it means “life is over”. London: Alzheimer’s Society, May 13th 2016.
Dementia Awareness Week (2016)
Dementia Awareness Week falls between May 15th – 21st 2016.
BBC Living With Dementia Series
The BBC is holding a “Living With Dementia” season of themed radio and television programmes, and digital content journalism; these various and wide-ranging contributions, aimed at the general public, focus on dementia throughout the month of May.
Living With Dementia. London: BBC Health News, May 2016.