Dementia was the leading cause of death in Britain for the last 10 years.

We're using this statistic to raise awareness of the scale of the challenge of dementia.

Raising awareness of the scale of dementia

Our research shows, whilst people may be concerned about dementia as a health condition, not enough people are aware of the scale of the problem, and how likely it is to directly affect them. 

This is despite prevalence of dementia being so high, with over 900,000 people living with a dementia in Britain today, and millions more caring for their loved ones. 

Making dementia a priority in health and social care

We’re using this statistic in our advertising to help demonstrate the vast scale of dementia as one of the most urgent health and social care issue of our time.

It also overturns the continuing, widespread misconceptions that dementia is just a natural, inevitable part of ageing, rather than being a terminal disease.

We know that hearing this statistic may be scary, especially if you or a loved one are living with dementia. But that’s why it’s even more important we raise awareness of this terrible disease, the fact that it’s a terminal illness, and the reality of just how many people it affects.

This will help us make dementia the priority it needs to be and, with your support, end the devastation it causes.   

Where did the statistic come from?

We collated official data on causes of death from England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland for each year between 2012 and 2021 (the latest year data is available for all four nations). 

We analysed this data using leading cause of deaths groupings developed by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and adopted by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) in their reporting for England and Wales. 

This analysis revealed that, according to ONS classification, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease was the leading cause of death in Britain for the last 10 years (2012-2021).

Ending the devastation caused by dementia

At Alzheimer's Society we understand all aspects of dementia. We’re the only dementia charity that offers dedicated support to those who need us now, campaigns for change, and funds groundbreaking research for a better tomorrow. 

We vow to end the devastation of dementia, Britain’s biggest killer. But we can’t do it without your support. 

Together we are help and hope for everyone living with dementia. 

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