WHILE the incidence of dementia in the south-west is likely to increase dramatically as the population ages, the news is not all bad.
Alzheimer’s Australia south-west counsellor Jason Kelly will tell a dementia awareness forum in Port Fairy today there are steps that people can take to reduce the risk of getting dementia.
Mr Kelly also said if people got an early diagnosis of dementia, there were medications that could slow the disease’s progression.
He said the incidence of dementia in the south-west was expected to increase by more than 300 per cent by 2050, from the present number of 910 to 2835.
There were no sure ways to prevent the diseases and there was no cure, Mr Kelly said.
However doing regular exercise, healthy eating and having a healthy heart with the help of regular check-ups could reduce the risk of getting the disease, he said. Today’s forum will also provide information about local services to help people with Alzheimer’s and their carers.
Apart from the counselling services provided by Mr Kelly, Vivian George from the Grace McKellar Centre in Geelong also provides a monthly service to help diagnose the disease.
Today’s forum is at the Port Fairy Community Services Centre in Atkinson Street from 9.30am-2pm.