September is World Alzheimer's Month, a month dedicated to the awareness for Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

As awareness spreads, people become more aware of the symptoms to look out for as well as the effect it can have on the person who is diagnosed and their family and friends.

Dementia is known to be an awful experience for many and there are a variety of symptoms you can look out for if you think your loved one might develop it.

But what is dementia and which symptoms are common and early for those suffering from dementia?

What is dementia?

Dementia is a range of symptoms that occur from damage to the brain caused by diseases such as Alzheimer’s but it isn’t a disease itself, the NHS website explains.

Depending which part of the brain is damaged will depend on which symptoms a person receives.

What are the early symptoms of dementia?

There are different types of dementia and people can be affected differently by them.

Having said this, there are some common symptoms which may appear before a person is diagnosed with dementia, including:

  • Memory loss
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Finding it hard to carry out familiar daily tasks e.g. confusion over the right change when shopping
  • Struggling to follow a conversation or finding the correct word
  • Confusion about time and place
  • Mood changes

These symptoms are often mild but it’s important to know that they could become gradually worse.

You can find out more about dementia and Alzheimer’s via the NHS website.

When the symptoms aren’t severe enough to be diagnosed as dementia, it’s often referred to as mild cognitive impairment (MCI).

These symptoms might not be noticed by the person having them or the people around them and they might not take them seriously at the time.

Some people will have these symptoms but they won’t worsen and instead just stay the same, however, some will go onto develop dementia.

It’s important to know that dementia isn’t a natural sign of getting older and if you’re worried about memory problems or other symptoms, this is why you should speak to your GP sooner rather than later.