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Posted on: 10.12.2021

The Link Between Dementia And Depression

It’s often forgotten that there is a significant link between dementia and depression. Not so much in the way that they come hand in hand, but more because they share a number of the same symptoms.
Unfortunately, this can mean that there is the opportunity for a misdiagnosis between the two. Here at Lovett Care, our carers have a wealth of experience that usually helps up when it comes to GP visits to get the right diagnosis. Not to mention they get to know your loved one on a personal basis so can help guide the GP down the right route with very relevant answers.
However, when it comes to getting the diagnosis before your loved one moves into a care home, this can sometimes feel like a bit of a battle.
Here are a few things to know that can help you in the process.

Dementia Symptoms

Firstly it is important to know the symptoms that are associated with a dementia diagnosis. These can include:

  • Memory loss
  • Difficulty with concentrating, planning or organising
  • Language difficulties, such as problems finding the right word or following a conversation
  • Visual perception problems, such as judging distances or seeing objects in three dimensions
  • Orientation problems, such as losing track of the day or date or getting lost in familiar places.
  • Changes in overall mood
  • Increased agitation

Symptoms Of Depression

Alongside dementia, it is worth knowing the symptoms of depression. As you can see below, there are a number of distinct similarities:

  • Loss of interest
  • Loss of recollection
  • Difficulty with concentrating, planning or organising
  • Language difficulties, such as problems finding the right word or following a conversation
  • Orientation problems, such as losing track of the day or date or getting lost in familiar places.
  • Changes in overall mood
  • Increased agitation

When it comes to a potential diagnosis of depression, consider any events or surrounding changes that may have triggered this response. For example, the loss of a friend or loved one, moving into residential care (this is a big factor), and even not getting on with a neighbour or fellow resident can trigger depression.

If you have any concerns that your loved one may be living with easier, it is best to speak to a GP as soon as possible. The right diagnosis is key in ensuring that they are receiving the right treatment and care. Inevitably giving them a better quality of life in the long run.

Dementia And Depression

Unfortunately, it is common for those living with dementia to also be suffering from undiagnosed depression. As the symptoms are so similar, depression is often overlooked as the symptoms are just considered to be part of dementia.
However, the change in circumstances, such as loss of independence and move to care that often follows a dementia diagnosis are strong triggers for depression. As well as not being able to understand what is going on.
In Lovett Care homes, we take care in paying close attention to those living with dementia to ensure that any depression does not go unnoticed, particularly in those with a fresh diagnosis.

Read more about “What is dementia?” and “Communication and dementia” for further information following the diagnosis of dementia for your loved one. For further assistance, or if you are seeking dementia care, please contact the Lovett Care team.

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