What is dementia?
Dementia is a term used to describe a group of symptoms that affect cognitive function, including memory, thinking, and social abilities, to the point where they interfere with daily activities.
What are the common types of dementia?
- Alzheimer's disease
- Vascular dementia
- Lewy body disease
- Frontotemporal dementia
What is the most common type of dementia?
Alzheimer's disease is a very common form of dementia in Australia. It is estimated that Alzheimer's disease accounts for 60-70% of all dementia cases.
Can dementia be prevented?
There is currently no cure for dementia, and the exact causes of many forms of the condition are still not completely understood. However, some steps may help reduce the risk of developing dementia or delay its onset:
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle, avoid excess alcohol and smoking
- Keep the brain active by challenging yourself to new puzzles, learning new skills and reading
- Maintain social engagement and participate in community activities
We will conduct a thorough evaluation to ensure an accurate diagnosis. If dementia is suspected, your doctor may arrange the following assessments to confirm the diagnosis:
- Cognitive and memory tests
- Brain images
- Blood tests
- Lumbar puncture
Treatment and management
Your Epworth care team will collaborate with you and your family to plan the best approach to treatment and symptom management.
Your Epworth specialist may suggest the following to help manage and reduce the impact of dementia symptoms:
Medication may be prescribed to help address dementia symptoms.
Coordination and care
Your Epworth neurologist may arrange referrals to other specialists such as occupational therapists, psychologists or physiotherapists to address associated challenges.
Epworth Rehabilitation programs are linked to some of the above treatment options and can help individuals with dementia improve their ability to perform daily activities as the condition progresses.
Your Epworth care team will arrange follow-up appointments to assess treatment effectiveness and adjust treatment plans as needed.
For Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia
Your care team at Epworth
The multidisciplinary team for Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia includes a specialist neurologist and allied health professionals, such as an occupational therapist and speech pathologist.
Learn more about the health professionals in the neurology care team.