Healthdirect Free Australian health advice you can count on.

Medical problem? Call 1800 022 222. If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately

healthdirect Australia is a free service where you can talk to a nurse or doctor who can help you know what to do.

beginning of content

Living well with dementia - video transcript

3-minute read

It is important to live life as regularly as possible after a diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer's disease is made. It is important that the home environment is made as safe as possible and that good health is maintained. The video below highlights some things to consider when living with dementia.

Video transcript


I know that dementia is making it harder for me to manage. I mean, if I forget to take my heart medication or I take it twice, I can be in real trouble. As things get worse, what does my future look like? What can I do now that will help later?

Professor Susan Kurrle

Well, when a diagnosis of dementia's made, you want to keep living life as normally as possible. However, there's a number of things you can do to improve safety.

For instance, around the house. Removing any trip hazards, making sure lighting is good, making sure there are rails in the bathroom because balance can be impaired in dementia.

There are a number of things around exercising, and certainly exercise improves balance and reduces the risk of falls. Good eating is really important, and regular eating every day. Ensuring good protein intake is certainly important.

Getting a good routine in terms of personal hygiene. Reminding them to regularly clean their teeth, and making it a routine to have a shower on a daily or a second daily basis is very important.

In terms of medications, it's very important that the GP looks at every medication that the person with dementia's taking and balances the risks and benefits. A number of medications may make memory worse, particularly those that help with bladder function. So it's important to balance up the side effects of those with the negative effects.

So it's important to balance up the side effects of those with the negative effects on the person's memory. There needs to be arrangements put in place for how the person takes the medication. Should the medication be in a prepared Webster-pak or perhaps in a Dosette box? And you still need someone to remind them to take it on a daily basis.

Once you've got a diagnosis of dementia, it's really important to manage other illnesses that you might have as well as possible. Because that means your dementia is likely to progress more slowly, and you're likely to remain more healthy. So medication's an important part of that. And ensuring the medication you take is necessary and does not have any side effects is something your GP and your pharmacist can do.

In dementia, you often see a decrease in appetite. This is usually related to loss of the sense of taste and loss of the sense of smell. And also people simply forget to eat or no longer know how to prepare a sandwich or make a cup of coffee. So eating properly is really important, and sometimes prepared meals are a good way to deal with this. It's also important to remember to keep well hydrated, and drinking plenty of water is a good way to do this.

Watch the related video

Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.

Last reviewed: October 2018

Back To Top

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

Top results

What is Melanoma?

Melanoma occurs when abnormal cells in the skin grow in an uncontrolled way.

Read more on Cancer Australia website

Carers NSW - Carer Survey

Read more on Carers NSW website

Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer occurs when abnormal cells in the prostate grow in an uncontrolled way.

Read more on Cancer Australia website

Intracranial Hypertension - Brain Foundation

Intracranial Hypertension Description Read more at Headache Australia (a division of Brain Foundation) Further Information and Support Click here for the latest Australian research papers on Intracranial Hypertension AustralianIntracaranial Hypertension Hypertension Australia (IHA) is a non-profit health promotion organisation whose goal is to provide information and support to patients, their families and... Read more

Read more on Brain Foundation website

What is Cervical cancer?

Cervical cancer develops from the tissues of the cervix. It is also called cancer of the uterine cervix. It is the third most commonly diagnosed gynaecological cancer in Australian women.

Read more on Cancer Australia website

What is Lymphoma?

Lymphoma occurs when abnormal white blood cells (lymphocytes) in the lymphatic system grow in an uncontrolled way.

Read more on Cancer Australia website

Brain Foundation | Migraine

Read more on Brain Foundation website

Breastfeeding resources in other languages

Read more on Australian Breastfeeding Association website

Local support groups

Read more on Australian Breastfeeding Association website

Carer Life Course - Cancer resources

Read more on Carers NSW website

Healthdirect 24hr 7 days a week hotline

24 hour health advice you can count on

1800 022 222

Government Accredited with over 140 information partners

We are a government-funded service, providing quality, approved health information and advice

Australian Government, health department logo ACT Government logo New South Wales government, health department logo Northen Territory Government logo Government of South Australia, health department logo Tasmanian government logo Government of Western Australia, health department logo