Questions Children Ask About Dementia

When I visit schools I never cease to be amazed by the questions that the children ask about dementia and memory loss. Here is a selection of their questions, along with my answers:


Q: Is it contagious?

    A: No it is not.

Q: Is it hereditary?

    A: Some rare causes of dementia are hereditary, but most are not.

Q: Do you get it from eating certain foods?

    A: No.

Q: Can eating certain foods stop you getting it?

    A: None in particular, but it is always good to eat a healthy diet.

Q: Do you forget how to swallow?

    A: No, but in some cases, as the condition gets worse it may be difficult to chew or swallow.

Q: Do you forget how to blink?

    A: No. Blinking is a reflex that is controlled by the muscles in our eyes.

Q: Do you die because of it?

    A: You are more likely to die from the complications of dementia such as infections and fractures, than from dementia itself.

Q: If you get it will it ever go away?

    A: Sadly no, but if it is diagnosed early there are medicines which may slow it down.

Q: Is there a cure for it?

    A: At the moment there is no cure.

Q: Are there any tablets that help?

    A: Yes, there are tablets available which will help the symptoms that affect thinking, memory and behaviour.


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