What are the Different Stages of Dementia?

What are the Different Stages of Dementia?Different Stages of Dementia


According to the experts in nursing homes for seniors, understanding the dementia timeline is essential to make thoughtful personal and medical decisions about getting professional help. It is wise to learn how to recognize the warning signs in the early stages of this condition to prepare for the future. In addition to this, knowing about the different phases of this cognitive disease will help you assess your needs.

The specialists in our nursing home in Rhode Island have put together a complete guide for seniors diagnosed with dementia.

7 Stages of Dementia in Seniors

Most types of dementia are progressive, which is why you may expect cognitive decline over time. Healthcare providers typically use the Reisberg Scale or Global Deterioration Scale (GDS) to assess patients with dementia. It is categorized into the following seven stages:

Dementia Stage 1

Although it may seem odd, the earliest stage does not involve any cognitive impairment, and you may have normal mental functioning. This is because it usually starts silently, with subtle changes that are difficult to notice. It is not easy to identify any symptoms at stage one of dementia unless you take a PET scan to see if your brain is working differently.

Dementia Stage 2

Studies show that most seniors over 65 experience forgetfulness. You may have difficulty remembering names or recalling where you put a specific object, such as your keys or mobile phone. The specialists in nursing homes are trained to recognize these early signs of dementia.

Dementia Stage 3

You could be suffering from mild cognitive impairment (MCI) when your memory problems become more regular and evident to family members and others around you. However, this may not significantly impact your routine activities functions.

It is essential to consult a doctor for medical advice because research shows that eight in 10 people with MCI tend to develop Alzheimer’s disease in seven years.

Symptoms of Stage 3 Dementia

  • Minor memory loss
  • Forgetting about prescheduled appointments and events
  • Losing things frequently
  • Difficulty finding the right words when conversing with people
  • Repeating information during conversations
  • Decreased work performance
  • Getting lost while traveling
  • Problems with driving
  • Challenges with concentration and organization

Dementia Stage 4

Generally, a person is not diagnosed with dementia until stage 4 because this is when medical professionals notice personality changes and cognitive impairment. This stage is commonly known as moderate cognitive decline and is a worsening of the symptoms of stage three dementia.

Common Symptoms of Stage 4 Dementia

  • Emotional moodiness
  • Lack of responsiveness
  • Social withdrawal
  • Difficulty with routine activities
  • Forgetting recent events
  • Reduced intellectual perceptiveness
  • Denial of symptoms

Dementia Stage 5

This phase marks the onset of what many medical professionals call mid-stage in the seven stages of dementia. Whether you are in your home or at a nursing home for seniors, it is essential to have trained staff to assist you with regular everyday activities, including bathing, eating, or dressing.

We place the utmost importance on provisioning extreme care and supervision for seniors with middle-stage dementia in our nursing home. This is because, at the fifth stage, a person may no longer have the ability to perform everyday activities of daily living (ADLs) without proper assistance. Although you may know the crucial facts about yourself, such as your name, your spouse’s details, and your children’s names, you may not remember your address, details about your high school, and more.

Symptoms of Stage 5 Dementia

  • Noticeable memory loss
  • Forgetfulness and confusion
  • Disorientation
  • Wandering, especially at night
  • Reduced problem-solving ability

Dementia Stage 6

With progression to late-stage dementia, full-time professional care at a nursing home may become necessary. The symptoms of the final stages include the inability to manage ADLs, personality and behavioral changes, and severe cognitive decline. The onset of stage 6 marks a need for professional help to perform basic daily activities and other self-care.

Symptoms of Stage 6 Dementia

  • Difficulty regulating sleep
  • Anxiety
  • Evident memory loss
  • Aggression
  • Severe personality changes, including delusions or paranoia
  • Inability to conduct yourself well in public settings
  • Failure to recognize loved ones

Dementia Stage 7

In late-stage dementia, seniors cannot care for themselves. Typically, all verbal ability is lost, and movement becomes severely impaired.

Symptoms of the Final Stage of Dementia

  • Inability to speak or move without assistance
  • Impaired bodily function
  • Lack of physical coordination

When Do You Need Memory Care?

Memory care refers to specialized care for seniors with dementia. It includes 24-hour professional supervision to prevent wandering, help with ADLs, and meal services. It may also involve health care as required.

Seeking memory care typically depends on your overall health status, dementia symptoms, living situation, and more. However, it helps to know that memory care at a nursing home is beneficial even in the early stages of dementia. The trained staff can get to know you and adequately care for your needs.

Get the Best Care at Our Nursing Home in Rhode Island

At The Holiday Retirement, we have a well-equipped nursing home for seniors who need memory care in Rhode Island. We offer a wide range of easily accessible services and excellent amenities to ensure you are safe and comfortable. We have a qualified team to cater to your needs and assist you in any possible way to make you feel at home.

Personalized attention by our trained and experienced staff helps detect warning signs for cognitive conditions such as dementia. It allows us to provide you with reliable advice and proper care.

If you are worried about having cognitive problems and believe that professional assistance would help make your life easier, give us a call at 1-401-765-1440. You may also fill out our online form to book a tour of our facility to learn more about our nursing home in Rhode Island and memory care assistance. We’ll be happy to listen to your needs and let you know how we can help.

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