If you, or someone you know, is experiencing significant memory loss, confusion or problems with language and decision-making, then it is important to seek an assessment from a doctor.
Sensing these types of changes can be frightening and wanting to avoid a possible diagnosis of dementia is a very normal response. However, a professional assessment is vital so that:
- Conditions with comparable symptoms including depression, thyroid problems, chest or urinary tract infections can be ruled out or treated.
- Other reasons for disorientation may be identified (e.g. sight and/or hearing problems; the side effects from certain drugs etc.).
- Emotional ordeals such as bereavement or trauma are acknowledged and supported.
For some people, receiving a diagnosis of dementia can come as a relief. Being given an explanation for the symptoms that they may have been experiencing for some time, allows them to begin a process of adjustment. It can also be the catalyst for starting a conversation with relatives and accessing suitable treatment and support.
NHS Oxford Health: https://www.oxfordhealth.nhs.uk/service_description/memory-services/