By Kitty, Noah and Harvey

What is Dementia?

Dementia creates memory loss and confusion between patients and family members. They forgot important pieces of their past, such as family members. Some people suffering from dementia even forget that they are suffering from dementia. People with dementia might suddenly have a mind blank, which immediately causes them to forget what they were doing at the time.

Where can you go for help?

There is an information and help hotline provided on the number:1800 500 100. Professionals provide services and programs on a national scale for those suffering from dementia.

Symptoms of Dementia

Some of the symptoms of dementia include

· Extensive memory loss

Memory loss that affects your day-to-day life can be an indicator for dementia. It is normal to forgets things like appointments and birthdays’ occasionally, and then remember them later, but not remembering them at all can be a warning sign of dementia.

· Performing familiar tasks with difficulty

People can be expected to forget, for example, to serve a certain part of a meal, but someone with dementia could be expected to forget how to make the actual meal, preparation, steps etc.

· Confusion about time and place

A person with dementia will constantly find themselves forgetting the date or what day of the week it is or find themselves confused by their surroundings, even when in a familiar place.

· Language Problems

Everyone finds themselves looking for the correct word to use every now and then, but dementia sufferers may find themselves constantly searching for a simple word, or may even substitute an easy word for one inappropriate in that context.

· Misplacing things

This is a very common sign of dementia. A person with dementia may put something simple away, like a loaf of bread or their keys, somewhere ridiculous, like under the sink or in the fridge.

Who is the most likely to get this disease?

Old age is a larger risk of getting dementia. 1 in 70 people in-between the Ages of 65 and 69 have dementia. There is a higher risk of getting Dementia when you increase in age. Nearly 1 in 4 people aged 85-89 have dementia. It is rare for someone to have Dementia at a young age but it does occur at younger ages sometimes, this is called ‘younger onset dementia’.

What are the main causes?

Dementia is caused by damage to the brain cells. The damage interferes with all the other brain cells, affecting their ability to communicate to each other. When brain cells can’t communicate to each other, this affects your thinking, behaviour and feelings. Each cell is responsible for each different function (for an example, memory, judgment and movement).