Dementia: Symptoms and Support

Dementia affects about 800,000 people in the UK Photo: ITV Border

Symptoms of dementia can be mild and go unnoticed for a period of time. Early diagnosis and the right support will help maintain quality of life.

Senior Nurse explains the importance of early diagnosis.

Symptoms

Dementia is not a disease but a collection of symptoms.

  • Memory loss
  • Difficulties with tasks and activities that require organisation and planning
  • Becoming confused in unfamiliar environments
  • Difficulty finding the right words
  • Difficulty with numbers and/or handling money in shops
  • Changes in personality and mood
  • Depression

These symptoms, caused by a number of conditions, are results of damage to the brain. They are often mild and may only get worse very gradually.

People with dementia and those around them may not be aware of the symptoms for some time.

There is a lot of support available Credit: ITV Border

Where and how to find support**

  • Get an assessment
  • Look at care options
  • Speak to specialist nurses
  • Seek advice from dementia charities
  • Use Social Media to talk about dementia

Having a health and social care assessment is one of the first steps to take. The assessment helps people with dementia and those around them get help and support from their local social services department.

Being in a familiar surrounding can help people with their condition. It is important to look at the care options available for people with dementia. If there is adequate support from family carers and community teams, many people can stay in their own home. A lot of people with dementia will eventually need support in a residential home.

Admiral Nurses are specialist dementia nurses who work with people with dementia, their families and carers. They aim to improve the quality of life for carers and people with dementia.

There are several charities that can offer excellent advice and support on dementia. See below for the link to their websites.

It's always good to talk and online forums are a good way to share experiences.

For more information follow the links below:

Go to a forum to talk about dementia experiences and find out what people are going through:

  • Talking Point is the Alzheimer’s Society’s forum for people with dementia sharing their information and advice, and supporting each other.
  • Carers UK has a forum for those who care for others