Dementia Symptoms

Dementia is not a specific disease but rather a term used to describe a decrease in a person’s ability to carry out everyday tasks. It is commonly associated with memory loss or a decline in thinking abilities. Dementia is often confused with Alzheimer’s disease, to put it simply, dementia is a symptom, Alzheimer’s is the actual illness, much like a sore throat is a symptom for a cold. Dementia is caused by Alzheimer’s disease approximately 70% of the time; however it can also be caused by other ailments such as Huntington’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.


Though dementia symptoms vary depending on the cause and person, below are the most common symptoms;


  •          Memory Loss – struggling with names or placement of objects around the house are ususally the first symptoms
  •          Communications issues – It becomes harder to find words and communicate
  •          Solving issues - complex tasks become very difficult
  •          Forgetfulness – starting to do simple things like making food or a drink and then not finishing the task 
  •          Disorientation – If someone seems more easily confused and bothered than before
  •          Coordination – tasks like cooking, cleaning or even simple tasks like opening a door whilst holding something may become more tricky


Personality changes may also symptoms of dementia, below are some examples of some potential personality changes;

  •          Depression
  •          Anxiety
  •          Sudden Mood swings
  •          Easily Distressed
  •          Being paranoid or hallucinating


Age and hereditary factors often play a part in causing dementia, however there are some other causes which you can control;

  •          Alcohol Consumption – moderation is key as continuously over-indulging on alcohol is likely to increase the risk of dementia
  •          Diet – High blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity are likely to increase the chance of dementia.
  •          Smoking
  •          Diabetes – particularly if the diabetes is not being well handled.
  •          Sleep Apnea


If you or a person you know has sudden and consistent amount of memory loss, regardless of age, then that person should be brought to the doctor for examination as soon as possible.  Learn about how Trinity provide specialized care for dementia patients through designing dementia/Alzheimer’s friendly gardens, room layout, signage and building structure.