Dementia in Younger People Engagement Event

20/02/2019

Dementia in Younger People Engagement EventThe Western Trust held an engagement event at the Mellon Country Hotel, Omagh today (Wednesday 19 February 2019) for younger people and their families across the Western Trust area who are experiencing some of the signs and symptoms of Dementia.

While dementia is often seen as a disease of old age, about 5% of people with dementia are classed as having early onset dementia i.e. diagnosed under the age of 65. At any age a diagnosis of dementia will impact on the person and their family. This impact may be greater if the person diagnosed is younger.

A person with younger onset dementia is likely to be more physically and socially active. When diagnosed they may be:

  • In full-time employment
  • Actively raising a young family
  • Financially responsible for a family
  • Physically strong and healthy

The symptoms associated with dementia may also be more difficult to accept and manage in a younger person.

Dr Bob Brown Director of Nursing and Primary Care and Older People, Western Trust said: “The purpose of this engagement event is to listen and understand what the main issues are for younger people living with dementia and their families living in the Western Trust. We want to hear about their experiences of their dementia journey so far, what worked well, what needs to be improved on and ideas on how we can enhance our current services in the future to meet their unique needs.”

Dr Brown continued: “It is widely acknowledged that compared to older people with dementia, younger people with the disease may experience more difficulty in accessing services appropriate to their needs.  The lack of age specific services or activities for young people makes having the disease more lonely and isolating for both the person with dementia and their carer. The needs and interests of someone in their 50s will inevitably be different from those in their 70s and 80s. We would like to thank everyone who attended today’s event and their valuable input which will help shape the future of Dementia Services for people in the Western Trust area.”