One in three people with dementia will be unable to visit their loved ones at Christmas, survey finds
- About 20 percent also no longer know what Christmas is
One in three people with dementia will not be able to visit their loved ones this Christmas, new figures show.
A study carried out by the Alzheimer's Society has exposed the devastation caused by the disease, which affects around 900,000 people in Britain.
As of 2022, a third of people with the disease have been cut off and unable to visit their loved ones, while one in four respondents can no longer take part in Christmas activities. A quarter no longer recognize family or friends.
About one in five are also unable to have a conversation with loved ones, while 43 percent can no longer buy presents.
About 20 percent also no longer know what Christmas is, family and friends report.
The charity surveyed 1,108 people, all of whom have a close friend or family member with dementia.
A study conducted by the Alzheimer's Society has exposed the devastation caused by the disease, which affects around 900,000 people in Britain (stock image)
From 1906, when clinical psychiatrist Alois Alzheimer first reported a 'severe disease of the cerebral cortex', to the uncovering of the disease's mechanisms in the 1980s and 1990s, to the current 'breakthrough' drug lecanemab, scientists have more than a century of trying to deal with the cruel disease that robs people of their knowledge and independence
The Alzheimer's Society also reported that caring for a loved one with dementia at Christmas is taking its toll on caregivers, with 38 percent saying they feel emotionally exhausted and a quarter saying they feel physically exhausted.
Worryingly, almost one in ten said they were at a 'breaking point', and 65 per cent said dementia had 'robbed' them of a carefree and joyful festive season.
The charity released the figures at the launch of its Christmas Appeal, asking the public to donate so they can continue to provide support to people with dementia and their loved ones over the festive period.
Kate Lee, CEO of the Alzheimer's Society, said: 'One in three people born today will develop dementia during their lifetime.
'Christmas should be joyful, but for many of the 900,000 people with dementia and their families, their Christmas has been changed forever.
'Too many people are confronted with dementia alone. We want everyone affected by dementia to know that whoever you are and whatever you are going through, you can turn to the Alzheimer's Society for help.
'More than a quarter of the caregivers we spoke to say the best Christmas gift they can receive is talking to someone who understands.
'Our dementia advisors are just a phone call or a click away. They can give someone the guidance, advice and empathy they so desperately need.
'If you are able, please help us to be there for everyone with dementia this Christmas, whatever the day brings, by donating to our Christmas Appeal.'
It is estimated that by 2040, 1.6 million people will be living with dementia in the UK, with many millions more carers, partners, family and friends affected.
Meera Syal CBE and Ambassador of the Alzheimer's Society said: 'I know all too well the devastating impact of dementia after my father died due to the condition, and earlier this year I also lost my mother to a rare form of dementia.
“Our family has cared for our parents for over a decade, so we understand how emotionally draining and physically exhausting this can be for caregivers. It is devastating to know how many other people across Britain have reached breaking point.
'I encourage everyone who can this festive season to donate to the Alzheimer's Society's Christmas Appeal. You will make a difference in the lives of thousands of people affected by dementia, and that is the greatest gift of all.”