The five stages of dementia are no impairment, questionable impairment, mild impairment, moderate impairment and severe impairment, according to Healthline. The spectrum takes patients from the first sign of mental deterioration to a state where they cannot function in any way without some sort of help, even when handling personal needs.
When the patient's stage is no impairment, he has no important memory problems, is fully grounded in place and time, has normal judgment and can function in the everyday world, explains Healthline. Questionable impairment can involve a struggle with timing and solving challenging problems. Some slippage may happen in the workplace or when taking part in social gatherings. At this stage, it is still possible to manage personal care independently.
At the stage of mild impairment, short-term memory suffers and interrupts some elements of the day, according to Healthline. Geographic disorientation begins, which means the patient may have difficulty finding his way from point A to point B. Functioning independently at activities and events outside the home becomes troublesome, and some chores go undone at home. The stage of moderate impairment means trouble with personal hygiene. These patients are still well enough to attend social activities or perform chores, but they need someone with them. More disorientation comes with space and time as patients struggle with time relationships.
The severe impairment stage means the patient cannot function independently. Extreme memory loss takes place, and there is no comprehension of place or time. This stage makes it difficult to go out and take part in daily activities, even with assistance. Round-the-clock help is required for personal needs, states Healthline.