Rise in dementia: more and more young people affected

Rise in dementia: more and more young people affected

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Support relatives of young people with dementia

Alzheimer's disease mostly affects people aged 65 and over, but certain forms of dementia appear from the age of 50. Even children can get sick. Young dementia patients usually have a particularly difficult time because offers of help are still rare. Now there is an online guide to dementia in younger age.

The number of dementia patients will continue to increase

According to the German Alzheimer's Association (DAlzG), around 1.6 million people with dementia live in Germany today. About 60 percent of them suffer from Alzheimer's type dementia. But the number continues to rise. According to the experts, it will increase to three million by 2050 if there is no breakthrough in therapy. More and more young people are also affected. A new online guide now supports relatives of young people with dementia.

Help for relatives of those affected

According to the DAlzG, around 80 percent of all dementia patients in this country are cared for and accompanied by their relatives. For the helpers, this not only leads to financial losses, but sometimes also to health problems.

Nursing is a heavy burden financially, physically and mentally. Experts have long demanded that relatives of dementia patients need more support.

A new range of information at "" supports relatives of young people with dementia.

The online guide created as part of the European RHAPSODY project is available free of charge on the DAlzG website.

Younger people also fall ill

Dementias usually only begin in old age. However, if a person suffers from dementia at a working age, this presents the family with very special challenges, the company writes in a message.

The job has to be given up, children have to experience the slow loss of one parent and the whole life plan is being questioned.

In the European project RHAPSODY (Research to Assess Policies and Strategies for Dementia in the Young) an online guide to dementia in younger age was developed in the form of an e-learning offer in three languages.

It is intended in particular to support relatives of those affected to shape their life together with the disease. The guide provides information on medical aspects, how to deal with the sick, legal questions and offers of support.

He also supports relatives in dealing with changes in the relationship with the sick and not forgetting to take care of themselves.

Multimedia information offer

"So far, there is hardly any information on dementia in younger age available in Germany," says Sabine Jansen, Managing Director of DAlzG.

"I am therefore delighted that we, as partners in the RHAPSODY project, have been able to contribute to the development of this multimedia information offering, which closes an important gap," said the expert.

"In addition, however, much more attention is needed for the topic and the development of new support services to improve the situation of young people with dementia and their families."

Education about the disease
According to experts, dealing and communicating with those affected generally requires a lot of attention, effort, calm and patience.

One should not overwhelm demented people and avoid stress as much as possible.

In addition, it is repeatedly pointed out that dealing with dementia patients should avoid baby language and treat those affected like adults.

Better information about the disease is also helpful: although dementia has not yet been curable, it can be delayed with medication in the early stages. Early diagnosis is therefore important.

However, although early detection is one of the most important points to counteract the disease, dementia is often recognized too late because the warning signals are not recognized.

Many people associate dementia with being unable to remember, but other characteristics can also be associated with the disease. For example, a change in behavior or emotional symptoms such as listlessness, aggressiveness or restlessness.

Triggers of dementia

While the exact causes of Alzheimer's are still unclear, scientists have now identified a number of factors that play a role in the development and development of dementia.

British researchers recently reported that a third of dementia cases could be prevented if certain risk factors were eliminated from childhood. In a contribution by the "BBC" the nine risk factors for dementia identified by the scientists were listed:

Hearing loss in middle age, lack of education in adolescence, smoking, depression, lack of exercise, social isolation, high blood pressure, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.

The personal risk of illness can be influenced to a certain extent, but the experts admitted that the numbers should be "interpreted with caution", since it is not possible to completely eliminate all risk factors.

In addition, other potential risk factors such as e.g. Alcohol consumption or sleep disorders have not been included. Nevertheless, the study shows that it is possible to tackle incurable dementia. (ad)

Author and source information

Video: Documentary: Late Life: Facing Dementia (May 2022).