Does combating stigma offend the ‘rights based approach’ in dementia?

Let’s for the sake of brevity keep the definition of ‘stigma’ short – but of course it has to be attempted in some way. Stigma, according to the current Oxford English Dictionary is defined as follows firstly. “A mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person:the stigma of mental disorder to be […]

It’s not the word ‘dementia’ itself which is stigmatising, but the words which are used around it

“the truth is dementia now stands alongside cancer as one of the greatest enemies of humanity” “just think of the families enduring the unspeakable pain of watching loved ones slipping away” (David Cameron, #G7dementia legacy event) There has been much discussion of the word ‘dementia’ itself is stigmatising. Kate Swaffer, advocate living well with dementia, […]

An analysis of 75 English language web articles on the G8 dementia summit

Background Experience has suggested that academic scientists can be as ‘guilty’ as the popular press in generating a ‘moral panic’ causing mass anxiety and hysteria. Take for example the media reporting of the new variant Creuztfeld-Jacob disease, a very rare yet important cause of dementia (Fitzpatrick, 1996). How dementia is represented in the media is […]

When we know when “the war against dementia” is over?

In writing this article, I have no intention of ‘sanitising’ dementia. I’m mindful of two recent comments which fell in my path indirectly: “Dementia is such a cruel disease” (by a daughter of someone living with dementia), and “I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t suffer something as a result of his or her dementia”. […]

Are individuals living with dementia “recipients” of care?

Language is very important. Only this week, the media was stuffed full of talk of dementia being a ‘horrible disease’, and people ‘suffering’. A recent Telegraph article cited, “Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt says it is “utterly shocking” that only half of people suffering from dementia are being formally diagnosed.” Society has a certain image of […]