Intimacy and sexuality

Most of us need to give and receive love and affection, and people with dementia are no different.


People with dementia will want to give and receive love and affection in different ways, and that way may be different to how they wanted it before their condition set in.

They may become more emotionally needy, or less. Because of the dementia, they might also become demanding and insensitive to others’ needs and less able to care for and support their own family and friends.

Their sexuality might also be affected. Some people with dementia may want to keep sexually active while others might lose all interest. Because of the dementia, others might do sexually inappropriate things.

Sexuality can change for the partners of people with dementia, too. They can feel in different ways about continuing a sexual relationship with someone with dementia. They might also feel rejected by the person, or they might feel guilty or no longer attracted to them.

It can help to talk to your doctor or a counsellor, or someone from your local Alzheimers organisation.

If your partner has dementia they will need you to be gentle and caring with them, even if it’s in a different way to how you related to each other before the condition was diagnosed.


There is help available for you as you care for someone with dementia, contact your local Alzheimers organisation for more information.