Spotting the signs of Dementia

According to Alzheimer’s Society, dementia describes a ‘set of symptoms that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem solving or language’.

It can be difficult at first to pick up on the signs of someone with the condition, as memory loss and confusion can sometimes just be a sign of old age. The symptoms of a person living with dementia however will get progressively worse over time and the person will often display behaviours that are out of character. 

Here we run down the key symptoms of the condition and how to help your loved one:

Difficulty recalling yesterday
 

A person living with dementia can often recall memories they have from 30 years ago but will struggle to remember what they had for dinner last night. Alzheimer’s disease creates impairments in short-term memory but remote memory, i.e. things that happened years ago, often remains intact. 

Rather than trying to bring the person with dementia back to present day, memory books, showing old black and white films and talking about past experiences will help to reduce anxiety and make them feel comfortable in their surroundings. 

Unable to carry out simple tasks 

You may have noticed your loved one struggling to carry out tasks that they were once a dab hand at. For example, being unable to follow simple instructions in recipes, having difficulty in making decisions over small matters and being unable to problem solve are some of the main tell-tale signs of dementia. 

If your loved one is displaying signs of anxiety or forgetfulness when carrying out day-to-day activities, then it can be unsafe to leave them alone. Turning off plugs, putting away sharp items such as kitchen knives and making sure to lock doors can help to prevent serious accidents. 

Difficulty talking 

People living with dementia often have difficulty in both following a conversation and sticking to topics. It is quite common for them to strike up a normal conversation but then veer off into a subject that is completely different without so much as a pause.  

It is important when chatting to your loved one to ensure that background noises are kept to a minimum where possible and that you relax and slow down your pace when talking. Despite the fact that you may see the person several times a day or week, each visit may feel like the first for them. Keep your sentences short, use the person’s name often and try to be wary of your tone and approach if you see them getting anxious or confused. 

Help for you  

Caring for someone living with dementia is tough and it important that you look after yourself and get the help and rest that you need. There are many support groups that can provide advice and an opportunity to meet like-minded people with a listening ear.

Help includes:

Dementia UK  https://www.dementiauk.org/sources-of-support-for-families/ 

Alzheimer’s Society  https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/info/20046/help_with_dementia_care/79/carers_looking_after_yourself/4  

Age UK  https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/care/helping-a-loved-one/caring-dementia/  

Dementia Care  http://www.dementiacare.org.uk/services/need-some-advice/carers-support/  

Here at Crouched Friars, it is our belief that a care home can be a truly positive experience. Whether your loved one needs round the clock nursing care or a little respite, our experienced team is here to deliver the highest standard of care in a relaxed and friendly environment. 

Our door is always open with tea and biscuits at the ready, so if you want to take a tour of our beautiful home, contact us on 01206 572647 or email info@crouchedfriars.co.uk.

< Back to news

Latest News

The benefits of spending time outdoors for residents with dementia

Posted on July 12th, 2024

Summer is finally here and it’s the perfect time to enjoy the outdoors and spend time in nature. The longer days and lovely weather encourage us to go out more, and we’re doing the same for our residents.   At Crouched Friars, we’re a team of dementia specialists and understand the impact a nurturing environment […]

Read more >

Steps to take after a dementia diagnosis

Posted on June 21st, 2024

When you or a loved one is diagnosed with dementia, the first few days can be quite overwhelming. A dementia diagnosis can often lead to feelings of fear, confusion, anger, sadness or loneliness. Post diagnosis is a crucial time when the person needs extra care and support to navigate their diagnosis. In May, we observed […]

Read more >

How to manage stress when providing dementia care

Posted on May 10th, 2024

Being a care worker is one of the most rewarding jobs. As a care worker, you provide care, support and companionship to people living with dementia. You help them maintain their physical and mental well-being and live a happy and healthy life. However, the emotional toll of caring for residents with complex needs, coupled with […]

Read more >

Supporting residents with dementia during sundowning at Crouched Friars

Posted on April 16th, 2024

Now that the clocks have moved forward and we have longer days, it seems like a blessing for most of us. However, this change can prove to be a big challenge for people living with dementia. At Crouched Friars, it is our priority to provide personalised and compassionate care for our residents living with dementia. […]

Read more >

Crouched Friars resident enchanted by musical at local school

Posted on March 18th, 2024

A 92-year-old resident who lived at Crouched Friars care home in Colchester fulfilled a bucket list item of watching a musical, thanks to The Wishing Washing Line initiative by FaNs network in Essex. Edwina Parker, attended Philip Morant School and College’s production of Matilda and had a “magical” evening. She was welcomed with flowers and […]

Read more >

Valentine’s Day celebrations at Crouched Friars

Posted on March 11th, 2024

Love was definitely in the air at Crouched Friars this Valentine’s Day – our day was filled with thoughtful touches and activities that brought smiles to everyone’s faces. Stepping into the common room was like stepping into a love nest. Heart-shaped balloons of every colour bobbed cheerfully from the ceiling, while rose petals and paper […]

Read more >