MORE than 150 people are living with young onset dementia in Herefordshire and Worcestershire, new figures show – but one charity has warned the actual numbers may be even higher.

Dementia is described as "young onset" or "early onset" when symptoms develop before the age of 65, usually between 30 to 65 years of age.

Dementia UK said limited awareness of the conditions leaves many families in isolation, with "little to no" service provision.

NHS figures show 183 people aged under 65 in the former NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire CCG had a dementia diagnosis as of August – accounting for just 2.6% of people in the area with the impairment.

Across England, 473,100 people had a dementia diagnosis with just over 16,000 of them aged under 65 (3.4%).

However, Dementia UK said its estimates are higher as the NHS figures do not include those with young onset dementia who have turned 65 since their diagnosis.