This could “manifest in ‘cold’ and insensitive statements”, Dr Swanepoel elaborated.

Alternatively, a person affected by this type of dementia might accuse others of doing the same thing (i.e. being “cold” or insensitive to them).

Dr Swanepoel explained: “The reason for this behaviour is because the dementia is causing a lack of social insight or awareness.

“Often a dementia patient might make inappropriate jokes and/or have lack of tact, but patients can also be withdrawn, which can be out of character for them.”

Frontotemporal dementia

The NHS explained this type of dementia affects the front and sides of the brain.

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This type of dementia can begin at a younger age; most people are diagnosed between the ages of 45 to 65.

Additional symptoms of frontotemporal dementia might include:

  • Personality and behaviour changes
  • Languages problems
  • Problems with mental abilities
  • Memory problems.

There might also be physical problems, such as slow or stiff movements.

While there is no single test for the condition, the first step is to speak to your doctor if you are concerned.

Dr Swanepoel has some advice for those who know somebody close who has been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia.

“Once the diagnosis has been confirmed, try and approach all behaviour as a form of communication or a message,” she suggested.

“For example, anger can be a message of confusion, fear or pain. Try to identify triggers as soon as possible.”

Dr Swanepoel added: “A break in a person’s routine might cause upset for instance.

“Distraction can be effective by focusing on what the person enjoys such as going for a walk.

“A daily routine can also be very effective which creates structure and predictability.

“Psychoeducation for loved ones can assist in supporting the patient which can foster an attitude of acceptance.”

Dr Henk Swanepoel is the Lead Neuropsychologist at Cygnet Health Care.

Post source: Daily Express

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