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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
Better Together
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Dementia

The term ‘dementia’ describes the symptoms that occur when the brain is affected by specific diseases and conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and stroke.

Dementia is progressive, which means that the symptoms will gradually get worse. How fast dementia progresses depends on the individual. Each person is unique and will experience dementia in their own way.

Symptoms of dementia include:

  • Loss of memory – for example, forgetting the way home from the shops, or being unable to remember names and places
Elderly
  • Mood changes – particularly as parts of the brain that control emotion are affected by disease. People with dementia may also feel sad, frightened or angry about what is happening to them

  • Communication problems – a decline in the ability to talk, read and write


In the later stages of dementia, the person affected will have problems carrying out everyday tasks and will become more and more dependent on other people.

Becoming forgetful does not necessarily mean that you have dementia. Memory loss can be an effect of ageing, and can also be a sign of stress or depression.  If you are worried about yourself, or someone close to you, it is worth discussing your concerns with your GP. It is very important to get a proper diagnosis.

The following links below offer more detailed information and advice on a wide range of mental health conditions:

Age UK

MIND

Royal College of Psychiatrists

The Mental Health Foundation

NHS Choices