22 May 2018

Spotting Dementia

It’s Dementia Action Week 2018 this week (21 – 27 May) - an awareness week that exists to shine a light on the devastating condition, which is said to develop in someone every three minutes.

This is a shocking statistic and one that the awareness week effectively brings sharply into focus.

Whilst Alzheimer’s disease is responsible for the majority of cases of dementia, dementia itself is not a disease but a group of symptoms that includes memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem solving and language.

Whilst Birtley House is a long-established Guildford nursing home with Outstanding CQC status, we are not specialists in Dementia – however as you might expect, many of our residents develop the condition during our care.

As a result, we’ve been able to gain a wealth of experience in dealing with dementia, not just with regards to making those affected feel as safe and as comfortable as possible, but also our nurses, too.

There are numerous sources of information on how to spot dementia, however here are the much-documented seven stages of dementia for those who may be concerned that one of their loved ones is becoming affected by the condition:


  1. No impairment

  2. Very mild cognitive decline

  3. Mild cognitive decline

  4. Moderate cognitive decline

  5. Moderately severe cognitive decline

  6. Severe cognitive decline

  7. Very severe cognitive decline


One of the Dementia Action Week’s supporting straplines is ‘Small actions. Big impact’, and we couldn’t agree more.

In fact, one of the small actions we’ve taken is to launch our own campaign to create Birtley House Dementia Champions – a programme that will see our carers become better trained in dementia (a request that we’re proud to say came from our committed carers and nurses), both in terms of learning how to spot dementia and how to cope with dementia.

Not only will this improve the skills of our carers and nurses but also help alleviate the daily challenges that those with the condition undoubtedly face.

We applaud Alzheimer’s Society for bringing this to the fore and we wish them all the best in their efforts to raise awareness around dementia during the coming week.

For more information on dementia visit https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/ or to discuss your loved one’s care needs with someone from Birtley House contact 01483 892055.

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