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Third of over-55s concerned about future care

Nearly a third of non-retired people aged over-55 are worried that family members will have to care for them in later life, a new report revealed.

The report, Dementia in the family: the impact on carers, surveyed 2,000 over-55s and found that 31% of them worry about being a burden on their family.

It also included in-depth case studies, including one from Phyllida Law, an actress and mother to actress Emma Thompson, explained the challenges of caring for her mother who has dementia.

She said: “The night time was particularly difficult: at dusk my mother would often think she was in the wrong house, or she would call for breakfast in the middle of the night, not knowing what time it was. When you're worn out because you haven't slept, you can be in danger of losing your temper, and that's very hard.”

The report showed how carers are commonly left isolated after prioritising their responsibilities to their loved ones over their social lives, and that dementia has created unwanted tensions in the family.

If we could delay the onset of dementia by five years, by 2050 we could reduce the number of carers by a third, Alzheimer's society explained.

“A diagnosis of dementia ripples far beyond the person affected, it touches whole families, and we owe it to them to do all we can to tackle it,” Hilary Evans, chief executive of Alzheimer's Research UK, said.