Women & Dementia

Women & Dementia

Ming Ho

Can we start a debate that acknowledges that dementia disproportionally affects women?

We all need to acknowledge that dementia disproportionately affects women.  Their stories enable us to explore the implications of the perspectives of women on dementia research, policy and practice. We want to initiate a debate and open up discussions around the lives of women affected by dementia.

The full report from this project was launched at UK Dementia Congress on 4th November 2015 (download the project reports from the link below)

Visit the project website at www.dementiawomen.org.uk

Global perspective

In June 2015, Alzheimer’s Disease International published a report global research review around women and dementia.

Their recommendations are:

  • All countries need to understand the current and predicted prevalence and acknowledge that dementia disproportionately affects women. Accordingly, policy makers should review what support is currently available and what is required to meet future needs.
  • There is also a need for skilled care competencies for health and care staff and professionals working with people living with dementia with complex needs and co-morbidities.
  • In all regions people should be able to access appropriate information and support in place, enabling women across the world to continue to provide care, and to feel cared for themselves

Read the full report at the ADI website –

Statistics from the UK

In March 2015, Alzheimer’s Research UK published a report which said that dementia has not only become the leading cause of death among British women but that women are far more likely to end up as carers of those with dementia than men.

Two thirds of the people living with dementia in the UK are women and many research papers state that most family carers and those paid to care for people with dementia are also women.

The report ‘Women and Dementia: A Marginalised Majority’ can be downloaded from the Alzheimer’s Research UK website –



  • ‘Women with dementia – our voices’

    This is a paper produced in 2015 by some women with dementia from York and Scotland, as part of the JRF project ‘Dementia through the eyes of women’. It was written by Eileen Jacques, Agnes Houston, Anne MacDonald, Wendy Mitchell, Liz, Elaine Stephenson and Margaret

  • Women and Dementia: All But Forgotten?

    There is also a review of the published work on women and dementia (Ludwin, K and Parker, G. 2015) 

  • Women’s experiences of dementia – booklet

    This booklet aims to give an impression of the effects of dementia on women – in their own words.

  • Dementia through the eyes of women

    Dementia disproportionately affects women, but their experiences and voices are missing from research and literature. This project aimed to inspire people to think differently about women and dementia by using stories and reflections from individual women to inform the debate in a unique, inspiring and insightful way.

  • Venus, Mars and Dementia: Gender perspectives on dementia – report from the 2nd VERDe meeting

    Two thirds of people with dementia are women. Caring is often seen as the role of women. Differences like these can also have implications for how men cope with dementia. But dementia is not often considered in terms of gender. This may mean that services for people with dementia do not take into account these important differences. What are the challenges for women and men affected by dementia, for practitioners, services and policy makers? How can a focus on equalities help with this?
    The second meeting of the Values, Equalities, Rights and Dementia network (VERDe) in London on the 2 June 2016 focused on these issues.

    This is the report from that meeting.

3 thoughts on “Women & Dementia

  • How do you deal with a wife whom you have loved and cherished when she loses the ability to write, read, or do any meaningful past time that will occupy them. My wife has an Ma and a BSc in plant and botanical science. She has just turned 65 but for the last seven years has slowly lost the ability to undertake even the most basic task such as hygiene, writing, even the ability to sign her own name. Cannot answer any questions regarding her personal history and has forgotten the name of all her friends and even the place she was born. I am now her sole carer her only daughter is in Australia along with a sister and the only other sibling of worth lives and works in Ireland.
    She was finally diagnosed with early onset alziemers disease in August last year.

    Jim Yates
    • Thank you for sharing your situation Jim. I’m sorry we didn’t spot your comment earlier. I hope you are both OK and have found some support.

      Philly Hare
  • Fantastic guide into a different persepective into dementia.

Leave a Reply

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *