Dementia is not a standalone disease — it comprises a range of symptoms arising from brain damage attributed to various underlying conditions, such as Alzheimer's disease.
Our consultants, who have specialist expertise in dementia care, work closely with our dementia nurses to improve the care and experience of patients with memory problems.
Symptoms can differ depending on the specific area of the brain affected.
They typically begin mildly and progress gradually. In some cases, this initial stage is referred to as mild cognitive impairment (MCI), as the symptoms are not yet severe enough to warrant a formal dementia diagnosis.
While different types of dementia can manifest differently in people, there are some common early signs that may emerge before a formal dementia diagnosis is made.
These signs encompass:
They may experience memory loss, including difficulty recalling recent events or information.
They may encounter problems concentrating, focusing, or maintaining attention.
Daily task impairment
Everyday activities that were once routine might become challenging, such as becoming confused when handling familiar tasks, like calculating change while shopping.
Language and communication issues
Finding the right words during conversation may become problematic, and there may be difficulty in following or engaging in discussions.
Temporal and spatial disorientation
They might become disoriented regarding time (eg forgetting the date or time) or place (eg not recognising their current location).
Changes in mood or personality may become noticeable, with a person exhibiting alterations in their emotional states or behaviours.
The following two websites have information and support for people living with, and affected by, dementia: