Do you know Someone with Dementia? Part Two: Its Causes and Symptoms

A friend of mine, David, suffered from Alzheimer’s Disease, a form of dementia.  As the days have passed, it had not been easy to observe his deteriorating condition, essentially the quite recognizable symptoms of dementia. 

Dementia is caused by damage to or loss of nerve cells and their connections in the brain. Depending on the area of the brain that’s damaged, dementia can affect people differently and cause different symptoms. My friend seemed to exhibit most of the signs of dementia as it progressively worsened.

The renown Mayo Clinic in the US describes the following symptoms:

Cognitive changes- difficulties, most noticed by another person with:

  • Communicating or finding words
  • Visual and spatial abilities, such as getting lost while driving\
  • Reasoning or problem-solving
  • Handling complex tasks
  • Planning and organizing
  • Coordination and motor functioning
  • Confusion and disorientation

Psychological changes:

  • Personality changes
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Inappropriate behavior
  • Paranoia
  • Agitation
  • Hallucinations

Many factors can eventually contribute to dementia. Such factors as age and family history, can’t be changed. The good news is that other contributors to dementia can be addressed to reduce the risk, including:

  1. Exercise and Diet, for example, follow a Mediterranean-style diet
  2. Avoiding excessive alcohol
  3. Cardiovascular issues such as obesity and controlling high blood pressure
  4. Depression, especially later in life
  5. Smoking-stop!
  6. Diabetes needs to controlled
  7. Sleep disturbances, such as sleep apnea
  8. Vitamin and nutritional deficiencies: low levels of vitamin D, vitamin B-6, vitamin B-12 

For advice about seniors and care at home in the Regions of York, Georgina and Simcoe, please kindly contact Brian Porter, Director/ Owner of Living Assistance Services (LAS), at 416-483-0070 (office), 905-758-2486 (cell) or or visit

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