What is dementia?

Over 20,000 individuals are living with dementia in Saskatchewan today – making dementia one of the most compelling health care challenges facing the province.

Dementia is an umbrella term and is not a specific disease.

Rather, dementia refers to a set of symptoms. Dementia can be diagnosed when these symptoms are a change from normal for the individual and are severe enough to affect their daily life and function. These symptoms, including changes in abilities, behaviour and communication, can be caused by neurodegenerative, progressive conditions that affect the physical structure of the brain.

Alzheimer’s disease is only one type of dementia. Neurodegenerative, progressive conditions can also include: Vascular dementia, Frontotemporal dementia (FTD), mixed dementia, and others. Similar symptoms may also be caused by treatable conditions such as medication interactions, infections, and/or severe vitamin deficiencies.

Dementia is about more than just memory loss.

Dementia can cause changes in abilities, behaviour and communication that affect an individual’s daily life. These changes – the ABC’s of Dementia – include, but are not limited to, memory loss. In fact, there are 10 evidence-based warning signs associated with dementia.

What are the warning signs of dementia?
Know your ABC’s

Building awareness about all of the 10 evidence-based warning signs is important because different types of dementia affect the brain differently. This means different types of dementia can present and progress in different ways, and every individual’s experience with dementia is unique.

Understanding that dementia impacts more than just memory is vital because with some types of dementia, memory loss is not the first warning sign that occurs.

Learning the ABC’s of Dementia helps you understand what an individual with dementia can experience. This empowers you to seek support if you experience these changes, making it possible to connect to earlier diagnosis, resources, and information to help you learn more and live well. It can also help us build understanding about what others living with dementia can experience. Knowledge about these warning signs can help you contribute to greater awareness and understanding for the neighbours, friends, and families in your communities.

Learn more, live well. Learn the ABC’s of Dementia today.

Contact us

The Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan

The Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan provides information, support  services and education for people affected by dementia. People who connect with the Alzheimer Society have a far better experience with disease than those who don’t. Find out more about us and how we can empower you to live well with dementia.

Contact our Dementia Helpline 1-877-949-4141 or visit our website