Having dementia means acceptance and make change in lifestyle. If you know what to expect, you can plan and make gradual changes to live as well as possible.
We are all individuals and everyone will experience dementia differently. No one is able to predict exactly how your dementia will affect you.
At first, you may have trouble finding words, finishing thoughts, following directions, remembering names or new information. You may forget where you put things or what people have just said. This can be extremely frustrating and you may become irritable. Many people with dementia describe feeling disorientated especially on waking from sleep. It can take a while to realise what time and what day it is.
You might feel confused and your friends and family may notice changes in your personality and behaviour. It is a good idea to tell your family and friends what is happening to you. Then, if they notice changes, they are more likely to understand.
You may find increasing problems with remembering and thinking as time goes on. Gradually, reading and writing may become more difficult, and it will be harder to take in new information and make decisions. Later on in your illness, you may find your everyday activities difficult. You may begin to have trouble with remembering appointments and shopping lists, managing money and cooking. Eventually, you may need help with basic activities such as washing, dressing and eating.
These changes are often very gradual. You may stay the same for months or years. Every person with dementia is different. It is impossible to predict when changes will occur. Although it may become difficult to continue some of your usual activities, you may discover other things to enjoy: sorting family photographs, gardening or listening to music.
You can speak to an advisor at the Bromley Dementia Support Hub to discuss the effects of your illness with you and your family. Advisors can assist you with any of your enquiries.
- It is important to plan for the future to help you live well
- Tell friends and family you have dementia to help them understand and support you
- There will be gradual changes to your abilities.
More Living with Dementia Articles
This article is part of a series of articles called Living with Dementia. They are for Bromley residents and are being published one a week between 15th May and 3rd July 2017. See more Living with Dementia articles as they are published here.