What to Ask: Dementia

The memory loss and other changes seen in dementia can have many causes, including physical illnesses and medications. It is important to talk to your healthcare professional if you are concerned about dementia. 

Click on each of the topics below to display questions you can ask your healthcare provider about dementia. 

Questions about Memory in General

  1. Is memory loss a normal part of aging? If so, how do I know what is normal?
  2. What can cause loss of memory?
  3. What tests can be done to detect memory loss?
  4. Can I do anything to improve my memory?
  5. My mother has been forgetting things for some time, but today she seems worse, and is not paying attention to anything I say. What is the reason for this? Should I bring her to see you?
  6. Are there treatable conditions that can affect memory?
  7. Could medicine(s) affect memory?
  8. Does depression affect memory?
  9. How do you treat dementia?
  10. Are there medications to treat dementia? What are the benefits/side effects of these medications?
  11. How can I prevent getting dementia?
  12. My mother has dementia, and now she is not able to manage simple tasks. I think she could do better - she is not really trying. How can I make her try harder and concentrate more?
  13. My father follows me everywhere and asks the same question over and over. Can anything be done about this?
  14. Is it a good idea to take my mother who has dementia to a daycare center?
  15. My father has dementia and recently has started calling me by my sister's name. When I correct him he gets angry. What should I do?

Questions about Alzheimer's Disease

  1. Is Alzheimer's disease a form of dementia?
  2. How is an Alzheimer's disease diagnosis made?
  3. Is all memory loss associated with Alzheimer's disease?
  4. Is Alzheimer's disease curable?
  5. Can someone who has Alzheimer's disease improve their memory?
  6. How long can people live with Alzheimer's disease?
  7. My mother had Alzheimer's disease. Does that mean I might get it?
  8. Are there programs in the community for people with Alzheimer's disease?
  9. Where do I find out about programs for people with Alzheimer's disease and their caregivers?
  10. What is respite care and where can I find it?
  11. Do senior centers have information on programs for people with Alzheimer's disease and their caregivers?

Questions about Neuropsychiatric and Behavioral Disturbances in Dementia

  1. What are neuropsychiatric symptoms?
  2. If someone has neuropsychiatric symptoms does that also mean they have memory loss?
  3. What type of specialist doctor do I need for this problem?
  4. What causes neuropsychiatric problems?
  5. Explain the best treatment for specific neuropsychiatric problems.
  6. How can neuropsychiatric problems affect the patient's sleep and sexuality?
  7. What kinds of medications are effective and safe for treatment of neuropsychiatric disturbances?
  8. What other kinds of treatment are useful?