Today (Tuesday 21 September) is World Alzheimer’s Day – with people urged to 'know dementia, know Alzheimer's' by learning how to spots the signs and symptoms of dementia.

This year's theme is the power of knowledge, encouraging everyone to understand changes in memory and behaviours so that they and their loved ones feel empowered to reach out for help and support, if and when they need it.

The NHS says that different types of dementia can affect people differently, and everyone will experience symptoms in their own way. However, there are some common early symptoms that may appear some time before a diagnosis of dementia, including memory loss, difficulty concentrating, finding it harder to carry out familiar daily tasks, struggling to follow a conversation or find the right word, being confused about time and place, or mood changes. These symptoms are often mild and may get worse only gradually.

People who are worried about dementia can contact the Alzheimer's Society for information and support either via its Dementia Connect phoneline, open seven days a week on 0333 150 3456, or by visiting Alzheimer's Society.  

Councillor Linda Leach, the City of Wolverhampton Council’s Cabinet Member for Adult Services, said: "Dementia is a terrible disease that can affect any one at any time. It has a major impact on the quality of life of those living with the condition and it can also have a physical, psychological, social and economic impact on their families and carers too.

"We and our partners in the Wolverhampton Dementia Action Alliance are determined to do all we can to support people living with dementia, and we are proud of the fact that Wolverhampton is recognised as a Dementia Friendly City, reflecting the steps that are being taken to make Wolverhampton as friendly and welcoming as possible to people living with dementia.

"But there is much more we can and must do, and World Alzheimer's Day is an opportunity for us all to take the time to learn more about this condition, become a Dementia Friend and get to know the signs and symptoms of dementia so that people can get the right diagnosis and support as quickly as possible."

To become a Dementia Friend, visit Dementia Friends. For more details of the support available locally, please visit Dementia.

World Alzheimer’s Day takes place on 21 September and is part of World Alzheimer's Month. For more details, please visit World Alzheimer’s Day.     

Organisations interested in joining Wolverhampton Dementia Action Alliance, which meets on a regular basis to discuss ways to improve services to better meet the needs of people living with dementia, are asked to email for further information.