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Dementia Awareness Month

459,000 Australians live with dementia. Find out how Dementia awareness can help

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Nearly half a million Australians have dementia, and almost 1.6 million Australians are involved in their care. Dementia Awareness Month runs from 1 September to 30 September, with Dementia Action week taking placefrom 21 to 27 September. As always, the campaign will play an invaluable role in creating awareness, raising funds and providing those living with dementia with a better quality of life.

What are dementia and Alzheimer's disease?

Dementia is a general term used to describe a mental illness that significantly impacts an individual's memory, communication abilities and reasoning skills. Symptoms of dementia often include episodes of forgetfulness, an inability to remember new information and losing track of time. As dementia progresses, these symptoms tend to worsen. In the most advanced stages of dementia, sufferers are often unable to care for themselves.

Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of dementia. It is a degenerative brain disease with symptoms that gradually worsen over time. Damage to brain cells associated with learning and communication can impact the thinking, behaviour and feelings of people with Alzheimer's. The exact cause and cure is unknown.

What is Dementia Awareness Month?

Dementia Awareness Month is an initiative of Alzheimer's Australia, held during the month of September each year. In 2020, this will be replaced by Dementia Action Week, which will be held from 21 to 27 September. Its aim is to encourage all Australians to become more dementia aware, to get a better understanding of what it's like to live with dementia and to create communities where people with dementia are supported and can enjoy a better quality of life.

Who organises Dementia Awareness Month?

Dementia Australia advocates for the needs of people living with dementia, their families and carers and provides support services, education and information.

Dementia Australia delivers a range of national dementia programs and services funded by the Commonwealth government, including the National Dementia Helpline, early intervention programs, dementia community centres, counselling and carer support and public awareness activities, of which Dementia Awareness Month is an important component.

How can you get involved?

A wide range of events are held around the country during Dementia Action Week, including media campaigns on mainstream TV, radio and press, forums and lectures involving dementia experts, and much more.

With the ongoing coronavirus crisis, some events may be delivered differently. The best way to keep up to date with what's happening in your area is to select the link for your state or territory on the Dementia Australia website. Over the coming weeks, Dementia Australia will release more information about Dementia Action Week, including helpful resources for community organisations.

Aside from attending an event, there are a number of other ways you can contribute during Dementia Awareness Month. These include:

  • Making a tax-deductible donation to Dementure Australia or leaving a bequest in your will.
  • Sharing information about dementia online using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media channels.

More information on dementia and Alzheimer's disease

To find out more about Dementia Action Week and Dementia Australia, go to https://www.dementia.org.au/dementia-action-week.

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