Living well with dementia

Dementia is a group of symptoms. It’s caused by different diseases that damage the brain. The symptoms get worse over time and include:

  • memory loss
  • confusion and needing help with daily tasks
  • problems with language and understanding 
  • changes in behaviour


Benefits of getting a dementia diagnosis

Finding the reason for any changes you’re experiencing can help you to get the right treatment and support. Speaking to your GP is the starting point.

Early diagnosis can help you

If you’ve only recently become aware of changes, it might feel as though your symptoms aren’t ‘bad enough’ yet. But getting an early diagnosis of dementia can be important.

3 out of 5 people with dementia wish they had got a diagnosis sooner. There are important reasons for this, which may help you if you are wondering whether to talk to the GP.

It might not be dementia

Problems with memory and thinking aren’t always dementia. Many other conditions can cause similar symptoms which can be treated, including:

  • depression or anxiety
  • medication side effects
  • sleep problems
  • problems with eyesight or hearing
  • chest or urinary tract infections
  • severe constipation
  • thyroid problems
  • stress 
  • iron and vitamin deficiencies

There are also other causes of memory problems and thinking that are different to dementia, and can get better with the right support, such as mild cognitive impairment.

Often, it’s a combination of things that cause symptoms. Seeing the GP can help you get the treatment you need to feel better.

Benefits of having a dementia diagnosis

If you have dementia, being diagnosed at an earlier stage gives you a chance to adjust and get things you need.

If you’re not sure where to start, here are answers to questions or concerns people often raise with us.

Getting a dementia diagnosis means you can access financial benefits you might be entitled to. It also means that you are legally protected from discrimination (being treated unfairly).

For more information, please visit the webpages below.

Benefits for people affected by dementia | Alzheimer's Society

Community Advice Hubs

It can be challenging for other people to understand why you are not able to function as well as you used to. This can be frustrating. Getting a diagnosis of dementia can help people to adjust to the changes you’re experiencing and support you more effectively.

It’s important not to write off your symptoms as being unimportant. Your problems are worth investigating – you deserve to know what is behind them and healthcare professionals are there to support you.

Deciding to speak to your GP is a positive and important step.

For more information, please visit the Alzheimer’s Society webpage below.

Dementia diagnosis | Alzheimer's Society - Connected Content

There is no cure for the diseases causing dementia yet. But there is lots of support that can help you live as well as possible. Getting a diagnosis should let you know what type of dementia you have. It can also help you plan for the future and access therapies and support groups. This may also mean you get access to medicines to help you manage your symptoms.

For more information on available support and resources please visit:

Get help from Adult Social Care

Get advice and information, whether you are worried about your memory, waiting for a referral or already diagnosed.

Call the Dementia Support Line to speak to a trained adviser 0333 150 3456.

Use the dementia directory to find local support services for people with dementia and their carers. Just enter your postcode when you use the webpage below.

Find support near you | Alzheimer's Society

Please use the link below to understand the types of support available for Carers in Solihull.

Support offer for carers (

If you have a permanent and significant disability a Blue Badge helps you to park closer to where you need to go either as a driver or passenger. Please use the link below to apply for or renew a Blue Badge:

Apply for or renew a Blue Badge (

For details of activities, ideas and inspiration to motivate everyone to ‘So Go! and get active’, visit the new Solihull On The Move website at:  

Older Adults - Solihull On The Move 

In response to the challenges which continue to cause difficulties for many households, there is a range of advice and help available to keep your home warm, reduce your energy usage and save you money. 

Here2Help - energy and fuel | 

For information on driving and Dementia visit:  The law on driving and dementia | Alzheimer's Society ( 

Lasting Power of Attorney for people with dementia

Many people with dementia will reach a point where they can no longer make some decisions for themselves. This is known as lacking ‘mental capacity’ to make those decisions. When this happens, someone else – often a carer or family member – will need to decide on behalf of the person with dementia.

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal tool that lets you choose someone (or several people) you trust to make decisions for you. This person is referred to as your ‘attorney’, and you can choose what decisions they can make for you.

There are two different types of LPA:

  • Property and affairs LPA. This lets the person you appoint make decisions about your property and finances.
  • Health and welfare LPA. This lets the person you appoint make decisions about your care and medical treatment.

You can choose to make both types or just one. You can appoint the same person to be your attorney for both, or you can have different attorneys. You can find out more about these types of LPAs below.

All LPAs must be registered at the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) before they can be used. The OPG is a government body that is responsible for the registration of LPAs.

For more information see ‘How do I make an LPA?'

View the Birmingham and Solihull Dementia Strategy 2023-2028 here.

For more information on available support and resources please visit the Birmingham and Solihull Integrated Care Board (ICB) webpage below:

Dementia | NHS Birmingham and Solihull (