Page 27 - TalkingCareMagazine_Online Issue4
P. 27

How does dementia affect people?
  Every person with demen a is unique and will experience demen a in their own way. However, demen a can affect people in similar ways. Some of the ways in which demen a can affect people include:
  Memory loss – this par cularly affects day­to­day memory, for example forge ng what happened earlier in the day, not being able to recall the reason for being in a par cular shop, being repe  ve or forge ng addresses. Some people remember things from a long  me ago much more easily.
Communica on problems – including problems finding the right words for things, for example describing the func on of an item instead of naming it. People might also struggle to follow a conversa on.
Difficul es with thinking things through and planning – problems with carrying out everyday tasks such as handling money.
Confusion about  me or place – not recognising or ge ng lost in familiar places or being unaware of the  me or date, for example.
Sight and visual problems – increased difficulty with reading and judging distances or mistaking shiny, pa erned objects or reflec ons, for example.
Unusual emo onal behaviour or responses – becoming sad, angry, frightened or upset. Someone may seem to lack self­confidence or display changes in mood.
Restlessness or disorienta on – in unfamiliar or noisy environments people with demen a may become confused or ill at ease.
        Communication problems
 We all need to communicate with other people. We need to tell them a wide range of things, including our needs, wishes and feelings. How well we can communicate will affect our quality of life, as well as how much we are able to keep our individuality and sense of iden ty.
Demen a can make it hard for people to communicate, and this can be upse ng and frustra ng for them and those around them.
However, there are many ways to help you support and communicate with each other.
At Alzheimer’s Society we know how important communica ng is. We have a dedicated factsheet that gives  ps and advice for communica ng with someone with demen a, and suppor ng them to communicate in whichever way works best for them.
A person with demen a may have trouble finding the right word, they may repeat words and phrases, or may become 'stuck' on certain sounds. In addi on, people with demen a are likely to have other sensory impairments (such as sight or hearing problems) which can also make it harder to communicate. If someone is not able to express themselves properly, they can lose confidence, or feel anxious, depressed or withdrawn. They may also behave in ways others find ‘odd’, because they are trying to communicate what they can no longer say with words. >
 I’ll touch on some of the key points in this ar cle, but you can find out more by visi ng the Alzheimer’s Society website: communica ng
  Courtesy of the Alzheimer’s Society

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