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Saturday, May 7, 2011

Dementia Awareness in India

Over the years, various studies on dementia have been conducted in India.

Some interesting data on the level of dementia awareness in India is available from the 10/66 Dementia Research Group, which is a part of Alzheimer’s Disease International. The 10/66 group reports its qualitative study in India at its page here. According to this study, while the symptoms of dementia are widely recognized, they are considered a normal, anticipated part of ageing and not as an organic brain syndrome, or indeed as any kind of medical condition.

As the report explains, this general lack of awareness has important consequences, because there is no structured approach to study or manage it, and a stigma is attached to the patient, and/ or to family members who are held responsible for this state of the patient. As caregivers in India, the challenge is clear.

The Dementia India Report 2010 explains that this general lack of awareness has serious consequences, such as delayed diagnosis and not seeking help from formal medical care services. Worse, it is not just general public that suffers from this poor awareness–health care services are also less informed about dementia.

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