Torbay Council is supporting Dementia Awareness Week taking place from Monday 18 May to Sunday 24 May.

Dementia Awareness Week is supported by Alzheimer’s Society, a UK charity which provides support and research for those affected by dementia.

In the UK, there are about 800,000 people with dementia and it is estimated that around 400,000 people have dementia but do not know it. By raising awareness about this condition, it is hoped that more people will be diagnosed earlier, giving more time for them to come to terms with future symptoms.

Dementia is not a disease. Dementia is a term given to a group of symptoms from certain diseases which affect the brain. Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of dementia.

A diagnosis of dementia is often devastating to the person concerned. Other serious diseases, such as cancers, offer hope, however small, of treatment success.

The symptoms of dementia are progressive and on an unknown time scale, which can be hard for people with dementia to accept. It could be months or years before the symptoms become advanced.

Many people with dementia, however, can live full lives with little or no assistance. Living in the present, doing the fun things now which were planned for later in life is a strategy which helps some people cope with this condition.

Symptoms of dementia include:
Memory loss - problems with short term memory is often the first sign of dementia.
Communication problems - linked to memory loss, communication problems often arise when a person is unable to recall a particular word or phrase in conversation.
Changes in mood - dementia symptoms can have a profound effect on a person's life. This can give rise to mixed emotions such as sadness, anxiety and anger.

Dementia symptoms are progressive, they worsen over time. Advanced symptoms usually mean that a person is unable to look themselves without assistance. The Alzheimer's Society helps provide this support.

The Dementia Helpline on 0300 222 1122 can provide information, support, guidance and signposting to other appropriate organisations.

For more information on Dementia Awareness Week 2015 please visit


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