I recently went to a 3D virtual reality seminar on understanding dementia. It was truly eye opening to experience dementia. In the scenario wearing the 3D glasses, we were put in the place of someone waking up and trying to find the toilet in their home during the night. Something so simple turned into a difficult and frustrating experience. There were many things which made it a challenge- the poor light, shadows, clothes and coloured mats on the floor, strange noises, and patterned walls and curtains.
In the second part of the seminar we saw how making a few changes to a home can make living with dementia much easier. These included plain wall colours, night lighting, getting rid of rugs, and putting signs on doors. These changes made it so much easier to find the toilet in the dark!
Did you know that dementia is the second leading cause of death in Australia? Every day in Australia, 250 people are diagnosed with dementia.
Dementia is a broad term describing a loss of memory, intellect, rationality, social skills and physical functioning. There are many different types of dementia and a range of symptoms- everyone with dementia has a different experience.
Some of these symptoms could be:
One man with dementia said "I'm different, but somewhere inside me I'm still here".
Dementia is not a normal consequence of ageing but does increases in incidence as we age. Dementia is a difficult condition to live with as there is a lack of community awareness about it and people experience social isolation as their friends don't know what to say in response to the diagnosis. It means people lose independence and friends, and often an income and work especially in younger people with dementia.
Dementia friendly communities
The "Dementia friendly" initiative is aimed at helping people with dementia thrive in their local community by keeping them independent and with a reason for living.
Being dementia friendly means:
Through this seminar I have learnt that businesses and individuals can become dementia friendly by watching three short videos and earning a certificate and badge to prove it!
Check out the dementia friendly website and become a dementia friend like I did.
I'll be writing more about diet and dementia in the months ahead so stay tuned!
For more info on dementia check out-
This is the course I attended and anyone can request more info to attend one-
Leanne is an experienced dietitian who is passionate about helping people eat well.