As we age, we may realize that our memories are not as sharp as they once were. The question is, how do you tell the difference between normal forgetfulness, and a more serious condition like dementia? 

What is dementia?

Dementia is a broad category of brain diseases that affect around 50 million people worldwide.

The main symptoms are memory loss, confusion, difficulties with problem solving and communication and other thinking problems. People may also experience behavior or personality changes, and trouble sleeping and eating.

The condition is caused by abnormal changes in the brain, which lead to loss of brain cells. Dementia progresses over time and can leave people disabled and needing 24 hour care.

Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia, followed by vascular dementia, which is caused by bleeding and blocked blood vessels in the brain. Mixed dementia is when more than one kind of dementia is present at the same time.

What we cover in the blog

Here you’ll find more information on the most common diseases that cause dementia:

Getting an early diagnosis can help you slow the progression of the disease. However, if you’re under 65 you may not be aware of the symptoms. Our resource about early onset dementia can help you understand the first signs and symptoms to watch out for.

When your loved one has dementia, the symptoms can be hard to deal with. They become confused doing simple things, start behaving strangely, and it’s deeply upsetting when a family member forgets who you are. 

However, it’s really important to be gentle and avoid anger or pressuring them to remember. We’ve put together some advice for communicating with someone with dementia. This should help you take a more positive approach to accept their condition and enjoy spending time with them.

People with dementia need a lot of assistance in the late stages of the illness. If you are struggling, we have a helpful resource on home care for a person with dementia.

Experts are still trying to learn more about the aging process and understand what causes dementia. This could be the key to finding better treatments or discovering a cure.