People's symptoms are not identical
As dementia progresses, symptoms will develop. The symptoms people get depend on which part of the brain is affected and every person's experience is different. Some might suffer from 'cognitive impairment' and struggle with everyday tasks relating to their judgement, reasoning, memory, language, planning and organising, whilst others might have difficulty with coordination or sight.
Why symptoms differ from person to person
With the onset of dementia, the symptoms someone develops will depend on what parts of their brain are affected by the illness. For example:
- If nerve cells die in the part of the brain that helps us understand language and communicate, called the 'temporal lobe', that person may have problems understanding what people say to them.
- If nerve cells die in the part of the brain that controls how we see, called the 'occipital lobe', that person may have problems with their sight.
- Loss of memory including loss of ability to learn new things.
- Loss of ability to recognise people close to you such as family members.
- Difficulty thinking, making decisions, or solving problems.
- Problems communicating, for example: problems speaking;problems telling people what you need or how you feel; and / or, problems understanding what people say to you.
- Displays of aggressive behaviour, to the extent that they cause problems for your carers.
- Problems with movement and coordination.
- Loss of independence, for example: problems with managing everyday activities; incontinence / problems going to the toilet; and / or, difficulty eating and drinking.