Dementia symptoms

Dementia is a set of symptoms which occur when the brain is damaged by a condition, such as Alzheimer’s disease or a series of strokes. The specific symptoms experienced by a person with dementia depend on the parts of the brain that are damaged and the type of the condition or disease. Please, be aware that these symptoms are not always immediately noticeable, but often occur over a varied period of time.

A person with dementia will have cognitive symptoms (problems with thinking or memory).
They will often have problems with some of the following:

Day-to-day memory

difficulty recalling events that happened recently.

Concentrating, planning or organising

difficulties making decisions, solving problems or
carrying out a sequence of tasks
(e.g. cooking a meal).


difficulties following a conversation or finding the
right word for something.

Visuospatial skills

problems judging distances (eg on stairs) and
seeing objects in three dimensions.


losing track of the day or date, or becoming
confused about where they are.

Dementia is progressive, which means the symptoms gradually get worse over time. How quickly dementia progresses varies significantly from person to person. As dementia progresses, the person may develop behaviours that seem unusual or out of character.

If you want to know more about different symptoms you can read more about it on our partner’s website: Dementia Forum.