Less psychosocial problems in patients with dementia during second lockdown

IOS Press

Amsterdam, January 19, 2022: The covid-19 pandemic still poses enormous social challenges. People with cognitive impairments (problems with, for example, memory and concentration) and dementia are doubly affected by this pandemic. On the one hand, they have direct risk of severe Covid-19 symptoms. And on the other hand, the restrictive measures hit them extra hard. As a result of disrupted formal care, such as home care, the informal caregivers were extensively burdened. During the first lockdown in the Netherlands, people with cognitive complaints and their loved ones were affected by the discontinuation of support services. The second lockdown was more strict than the first: many shops were closed, a curfew was imposed and home visits were limited to one person a day.

Cognitive decline

During the first lockdown, worries were reported for faster cognitive decline in patients with dementia. This is due to the cessation of formal care and the increase in psychosocial problems as a results of social isolation during lockdown. Whether there is actually a decline due to the lockdown is currently being investigated.

This new study shows that patients and loved ones have adapted to the challenges of the Covid-19 lockdown. For example, during the second lockdown, patients and loved ones reported fewer psychosocial problems, such as anxiety, compared to the first lockdown. In addition, patients experienced more social social support compared to the first lockdown. Finally, the researchers found an important protective factor against negative feelings during the lockdown. Patients and loved ones who experienced support from family and friends reported fewer negative feelings, such as loneliness and sadness.

Effects of covid-19

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