Dame Barbara Windsor has taken to calling the worst aspects of her Alzheimer’s disease ‘blackout periods’ as the degenerative condition progressively worsens.
Appearing on Thursday’s edition of Loose Women, husband Scott Mitchell admitted the former EastEnders and Carry On star was struggling to cope with the memory loss attributed to suffers of the condition, for which there is no cure.
‘She’ll call them her blackouts,’ he explained. ‘She’ll hold her head and say “I’ve got one of those blackouts, where are we?” Any lover, my heart goes out to you, you are powerless.’
Devastating: Dame Barbara Windsor has taken to calling the worst aspects of her Alzheimer’s disease ‘blackout periods’ as the degenerative condition progressively worsens
Scott, 56, confirmed Dame Barbara’s Alzheimer’s in May 2018, four years after her original diagnosis.
The 81-year old is now being cared for round-the-clock by her husband, who admits her worst moments are during the gradual transition from daytime to night time.
‘It’s every night from five o clock onward,’ he explained. ‘It’s called sun-downing. As it gets darker they become more confused and she’s on this loop. It becomes a loop every time from that time.’
Opening up: Appearing on Loose Women, husband Scott Mitchell admitted the former EastEnders star was struggling to cope with the memory loss attributed to the condition
Reflecting on her memory loss, he admitted photographs of the couple taken before the devastating condition took hold often help the actress find her bearings.
He said: ‘She is constantly asking the same question about house, how long are we staying here, how did we get here, are we going to be here long, and I gently remind her this is our home and occasionally she’ll say, “ah yes the photos.”‘
‘I’ve got the board up with all the pictures from when we first met and our point down to that, which she loves, because I guess the clearest memories for Barbara are way before me.’
Scott has since formed Barbara’s Revolutionaries with EastEnders stars Adam Woodyatt, Jake Wood, Emma Barton, Natalie Cassidy, Kellie Shirley, Tanya Franks, Jamie Borthwick and Jane Slaughter in order to raise £100,000 for the UK Dementia Research Institute.
£64,462.72 of the initial target has so far been raised, including a generous £5,000 cheque from Sir Elton John and David Furnish.
The Revolutionaries will raise further awareness by taking part in the London Marathon on April 28, and Scott admits it is his dream to see Barbara at the finish line.
‘She will be determined to be there,’ he said. ‘That will hopefully will be the thing, when I wanna cry and my legs are hurting, the vision of her at the end. That’s going to be the ultimate thing for us.’