Facts about dementia
Information in this section comes from four reliable sources, including the Alzheimer Society’s Rising Tide: The Impact of Dementia on Canadian Society. The report has become the benchmark for statistics about dementia in Canada. Read more.
Prevalence: number of cases in a given year
- In 2010, more than 500,000 Canadians were living with dementia1.
- Of these, approximately 71,000 are under the age of 651.
- 1 in 11 Canadians over 65 has dementia1.
- Women account for 72 per cent of all Alzheimer cases, and 62 per cent of all dementia cases1.
- Within a generation, the numbers of Canadians living with dementia will more than double to 1.1 million1.
Incidence: number of new cases per year
- In 2010, there were over 110,000 new cases of dementia a year, or one new case every five minutes.
- Within a generation, there will be over 250,000 new cases a year, or one new case every two minutes.
- Over the next 25 years, without a medical breakthrough, more than four million Canadians will have developed Alzheimer's disease or a related dementia.
- In 2010, the cost of dementia in Canada was estimated at $22 billion a year. The cost estimate includes Costs the direct costs of health care services, the opportunity costs of caregiving's impact on the ability to work, and the indirect costs of lost productivity and lost wages. If nothing changes, this number will climb to $153 billion a year within a generation.
- Note: Over the next 25 years, the cumulative economic cost of dementia (in 2010 dollars) is expected to exceed $872 billion1.
Impact of care
Caregiving is a critical issue for people living with dementia and for Canadians in general.
- One in five Canadians aged 45 and older provides some form of care to seniors living with long-term health problems3.
- A quarter of all family caregivers are seniors themselves; a third of them (more than 200,000) are older than 753.
- For dementia alone, the number of family caregiving hours is expected to more than triple, from approximately 259 million hours in 2010, to 756 million hours by 20381.
- The physical and psychological toll on family caregivers is considerable; up to 75 per cent will develop psychological illnesses; 15 to 32 per cent suffer from depression4.
Global impact of dementia
- As of 2010, more than 35.6 million people worldwide are living with dementia, or more than the total population of Canada4.
- The global prevalence of dementia stands to double every 20 years, to 65.7 million in 2030, and 115.4 million in 2050.
- Total health-care costs for people with dementia amount to more than 1 per cent of the global gross domestic product (GDP), or US$604 billion in 2010.
It's time to act
In 2011, the first wave of the baby boomers turned 65.
- The risk for dementia doubles every five years after age 65.
- Alzheimer's disease is the most significant social and health crisis of the 21st century. Without fundamental changes in research funding and service delivery, it has the potential to overwhelm Canadian families and our health-care system.
- The time to act is now. Canada needs a National Dementia Strategy aimed at alleviating the burden of the disease through improved education, care and service delivery and increased funding for research and training.
- The Alzheimer Society calls on all levels of government to put Canada on the map among the growing number of countries who have already developed and implemented a national dementia strategy.
- Rising Tide: The Impact of Dementia on Canadian Society. (2010). Alzheimer Society of Canada
- Baby Boomer Survey: Alzheimer's disease… it's more than you think. (2010). Alzheimer Society of Canada
- Eldercare: What We Know Today. (2008). Statistics Canada
- World Alzheimer Report 2010, The Global Economic Impact of Dementia. (2010). Alzheimer's Disease International (ADI)
Last Updated: 12/15/11