A 71-year-old man pushes his 68-year-old wife, who suffers from dementia, outside her care facility in Tokyo last October. Photo: REUTERS file
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Dementia patients reported missing in 2018 hit record 17,000

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197 could not be found by the end of the year

Tragic. My condolences.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I worked in nursing homes in Los Angeles after retiring from the military. An elderly man wandered off, and the management was frantic. I drove my own car up and down Sunset and Hollywood Boulevards until I found the guy. I had to offer him a ride, I couldn't just throw him in the car. But he agreed to go and I took him back where he was a resident. The head nurse and facility manager high-fived each other but nobody said a word of thanks to me. I'm still mad about it to this day.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Like it or not, this is going to get a hell of a lot worse before it gets better here. We will be seeing more and more articles about the problems the elderly are experiencing for at least the next decade.

And even more sad than that, is that it will probably take the government and appropriate ministries at least that long to come up with a course of action to alleviate the problems!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I worked in nursing homes in Los Angeles after retiring from the military. An elderly man wandered off, and the management was frantic. I drove my own car up and down Sunset and Hollywood Boulevards until I found the guy. I had to offer him a ride, I couldn't just throw him in the car. But he agreed to go and I took him back where he was a resident.

An awesome display of common decency as a human being. I appreciate that you did this.

The head nurse and facility manager high-fived each other but nobody said a word of thanks to me. I'm still mad about it to this day

%*#% em. Arses are in no short supply.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Good to see the government working to help the delay of the disease but equally important is educating the population on how to handle their family members. A helpline would help as well like this one in Canada would be very useful.

https://alzheimer.ca/en/bc/We-can-help/Resources/First-Link-dementia-helpline

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Reflecting the rapid aging of society, the figure has set new records every year.

It reflects the lack of proper care for dementia sufferers and the elderly in general.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Some kind of GPS device will be a legal requirement.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

socrateos beat me to it, but a GPS wristband or the like could help here. I wouldn't make it a requirement.

"Throw tech at the problem" can be a very bad approach, but this sounds like one situation where it would be useful.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

x

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Dementia is a sad illness and many people with it wander off, sometimes with tragic consequences. Hopefully science will find a way to slow it down or stop it. Japan does have a good system of alerting the public when someone wanders off using the loudspeakers scattered around the neighborhoods to announce a missing person.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Taking turmeric and curcumin may be a good measure to prevent dementia.

Also, if care homes put a fake bus stop outside their facility, most escapees with dementia will just wait around the bus stop, thus making them easy to find.

Additionally, putting microchips in the dementia may be an option, and then offer a drone to pick them up and bring them back to the care home.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Tag them or put the fake bus stop in the reception. Some places have also build models of previous style shops and houses that the people remember from their childhoods. Reducing their stress levels.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

My father was tormented with NPH--Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus(water on the brain) for more than 10 years--5 years from diagnosis. Sadly, we didn't catch it early enough for the treatment to have much of an effect. If caught early, his form of dementia is somewhat treatable and in some cases reversible. The first facility he was in had a code to get out of his wing that would have been impossible for him to figure out or remember. At the second place he was in the guests needed to be buzzed out at the door by a staff member. I can't imagine my dad going missing. Sorry to hear that nearly 200 were never found!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Let me share my personal experience on the matter. My great grandmother had dementia in her latter years and once disappeared for months and was found 40 km from where we were. It turned out that despite her dementia, she remembered her exact hometown and made the trip on foot, trying to look for her house which was no longer there. My grandfather (my great grandmother's son) recently started to show signs of dementia and my family opted to make a road id bracelet and necklace for my grandfather just in case. A simple piece of identification would be a life saver for people suffering dementia, I hope those that got lost are in good hands and return safe.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Umm... what?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

ALL Boomers will be 75 in 2025?

I think they meant the FIRST, otherwise I lost a decade and a half somewhere...

4 ( +4 / -0 )

It's a sad thing that people with dementia are wandering away from home and in 197 cases, never found again, but far worse in my opinion are the measures some "nursing homes" and hospitals take to keep them from wandering.

Heavy-duty medications, physical restraints, failure to encourage physical movement leading to immobility - I've seen all three of those with elderly relatives of mine, and boy do you have to fight the staff to get them to change things.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Those in their 20s were the leading age group at 18,518. Of the total, 64.1 percent were male and 35.9 percent female.

They kinda slipped that statistic in. So, 18,518 young men and women disappeared. What's happening with these guys?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Keep adopting a Western diet and you adopt our diseases as well. You were better off without chicken and beef

Seems pretty easy to avoid. Eat your vegetables, learn from history.

https://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-okinawa-diet-living-to-100/

https://nutritionfacts.org/video/how-to-prevent-alzheimers-with-diet/

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

madmanmuntToday 09:01 am JST

Taking turmeric and curcumin may be a good measure to prevent dementia.

Also, if care homes put a fake bus stop outside their facility, most escapees with dementia will just wait around the bus stop, thus making them easy to find.

Additionally, putting microchips in the dementia may be an option, and then offer a drone to pick them up and bring them back to the care home.

Your first point is utter woo woo. You ideas for 'caring' for those with dementia show you have no idea about the illness, or how it effects individuals.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

For the most venerable people in these nursing homes, I am sure that there is a small gadget, may be a small locket that could be worn around the neck or wrist band, I don't want to use the word "tagging device" as it suggests that they are criminals, I am sure that there is a small GPS data tracker small enough that could be used, this way individuals could be traced very quickly, especially in autumn and winter where hypothermia is a serious threat.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

One impractical thing about GPS trackers is that they have to be kept charged. A simple badge with a contact telephone number may be more effective.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

It’s in the food, the paint, the insulation. I tell you, one of these days, they’d find the cause of dementia and it will be something we’ve been buying and using all our lives.

unless the root cause of the sickness is found, this problem will surely grow as the years go by.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

How many of these have access to a vehicle? And could murder innocent pedestrians. Japans elderly are having a catastrophic effect on the country. But as usual nothing is being done about it, more attention being put on the order of how Japanese first and last names are presented in foreign media.

Prioritize please Japan

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Dementia can be cut in half by mind stimulation ( reading ) and eating healthy ( berries ).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Dementia can be cut in half by mind stimulation ( reading ) and eating healthy ( berries ).

It is also put off by learning a second language - something every one of us in Japan are in a prime position to do.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

unless the root cause of the sickness is found, this problem will surely grow as the years go by.

Root cause is already known. Has been known for decades. But it's inconvenient

https://nutritionfacts.org/video/how-to-prevent-alzheimers-with-diet/

Vid opens with Japanese science results

0 ( +0 / -0 )

GPS trackers is that they have to be kept charged. 

They make some low maintenance emitting gadgets that are active a long time, 2 to 4 years for the cheapest ones. People tag their cars/cycles or pet with that. It's not a shame for humans to carry one. I used one on myself (in my shoe, to check my jogging routes later). Give those cool podometers to all the elderly, say there is a prize. Well, certain persons may get rid of the tag, not feeling the need or not remembering that they had to keep that ugly bracelet/whatever it's fixed on. An advantage of the tracker is the carers/relatives can set an alarm and notice early that the person went out of the house/center.

So, 18,518 young men and women disappeared. What's happening with these guys?

You've seen Green soylent ? My understanding is a large part of the healthy adults that are "reported missing" have just moved to another place, tand they have cut contact with family/acquaintances/debtors... Then the good looking ones may have been abducted by North Korea or by the aliens.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They make some low maintenance emitting gadgets that are active a long time, 2 to 4 years for the cheapest ones.

@coskuri, do you have any more information? I'm aware of passive devices that record location on the device itself, and also alarm types with an SOS button that will send a signal when needed. But I thought that devices that are able to be remotely tracked at any time have a more limited battery life.

the carers/relatives can set an alarm and notice early that the person went out of the house/center.

I've seen such devices in action at a hospital. They seemed very effective. One floor of the building was for elderly patients, and those with signs of dementia were fitted with a wrist device that set off a signal when they got on the elevator. That allowed them to wander around the wards on that floor with some degree of freedom.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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