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Dementia Beyond Memory Loss: Other Signs & Symptoms

Elderly female hands trying to connect pieces of white jigsaw puzzle on wooden table. Creative idea for Alzheimer's disease, dementia, memory loss

For many, dementia and memory loss go hand in hand, but dementia can affect individuals in more ways than this. Rather than one specific disease, dementia is a set of progressive conditions that affect a person’s overall cognitive functioning, including memory, problem-solving, communication, and more.

Exceptional dementia care starts with this understanding. As a memory care provider in Guntersville, Alabama, Lakeshore Senior Living’s team members know the impact a dementia diagnosis can have on a person and their family. To help you learn more about what to expect, we are sharing other symptoms of dementia beyond memory loss.

Confusion with Time or Place

According to Medical News Today, “dementia can make it hard to judge the passing of time. People may also forget where they are at any time.”

This can happen even if individuals are in a familiar place. Because dementia tends to affect short-term memory before long-term memory, individuals sometimes get confused about what year it is (thinking it is a year that has long passed) or even thinking that they still live in a home from years before.

Furthermore, an individual living with dementia may not understand if something is not happening immediately, or they could forget where they are or how they got there.

Difficulty with Language

Even though it comes naturally to so many of us, a lot of effort goes into holding a conversation. Not only do you have to listen and process what someone else is saying, but you have to remember this information and formulate an appropriate response, making sure not to repeat yourself or anything the other person has said. All of this happens in a short amount of time, and it only becomes more challenging when more people get added to the conversation.

This can be difficult for individuals living with dementia. The Alzheimer’s Association states, “people living with Alzheimer’s [or another form of dementia] may have trouble following or joining a conversation. They may stop in the middle of a conversation and have no idea how to continue or they may repeat themselves.”

Additionally, it is common for a person living with dementia to have difficulty finding the right word to describe something or substitute a word that does not fit into the context of what they are attempting to say.

Trouble with Visual & Spatial Relationships

“Visual information can be challenging for a person with dementia. It can be hard to read, to judge distances, or work out the differences between colors (Medical News Today).” In addition, having trouble with visual and spatial relationships can affect a person’s balance and make activities such as driving or cycling more difficult.

Dementia Care in Guntersville, Alabama

Our mission at Lakeshore Senior Living is to cultivate a welcoming and calming atmosphere that supports individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Through personalized programs and therapies, residents of our dementia care community receive the support they need to continue leading active, fulfilling lives within a safe and secure environment.

Our all-inclusive memory care programs are designed to support the cognitive health of residents and allow them to create meaningful moments. In addition, we develop care plans catered to each person’s needs, strengths, and goals.

We also incorporate various dementia care therapies and activities that focus on physical, mental, and emotional wellness, including:

  • Music Therapy
  • Reminiscent Therapy (Might include things like talking with a person living with dementia about their hometown, school days, work-life, or favorite hobbies.)
  • Intellectually Stimulating Activities (Sensory Boxes, Word Games, Puzzles, Trivia)
  • Tactile Therapies (Pet Therapy, Activity Aprons, Mats, etc.)
  • Occupational Therapy and Life Skills
  • Physical Activity and Exercise
  • Scheduled Outings and Shopping Trips

Dementia affects each person differently, and several conditions fall under the dementia umbrella, including Alzheimer’s disease. Talk with your parent or family member’s healthcare provider to get a better understanding of their specific condition and to develop next steps that manage its symptoms and progression.

If you would like to learn more about the dementia care services we offer in our Guntersville, Alabama, community, we invite you to visit our website or contact a member of the Lakeshore Senior Living team.


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