What to do if you're diagnosed with a dementia

Dementia is a name of a condition, it is not a person. Each person, as they live with a dementia, will experience things that are individual to them. If you have been diagnosed, there is information and support to help you to live well with the condition.

A dementia diagnosis can help uncertainty 

A diagnosis of a dementia can be difficult news. An explanation of what the problem is, and what can be done about it, may help reduce some of the worry caused by uncertainty.

If you've been diagnosed with a dementia, it might help to talk it through with family and friends.

You can get help and support available from:

  • health services
  • social services
  • voluntary organisations

Why it is important to plan ahead 

Dementia is a progressive condition that is individual to each person. A timely diagnosis can help you plan ahead.

Key things to consider include:

  • staying well
  • services and support - find out what's available locally
  • legal and financial issues

Looking after your property and money

You may want help to manage your property and financial affairs.

You can formally appoint a friend, relative or professional to act on your behalf, by giving them a Power of Attorney.

To read more about enduring power of attorney, go to:

Looking after your health and wellbeing 

Looking after your health and wellbeing is important for everyone, including people with a dementia. If you are living with a dementia, key things include:

  • looking after your health
  • maintaining a social life
  • ways to combat sleep problems in dementia
  • keeping active and occupied
  • self care in dementia

To read more about living well with a dementia, go to the NHS website.

Financial matters 

There are different benefits and financial support available if you have a dementia or support someone with a dementia. To find out about help and support, speak to your key worker.

Driving and dementia 

Some people with dementia prefer to give up driving because they find it stressful, but others continue driving. To continue driving, you must inform the Driver & Vehicle Agency (DVA) that you have a dementia.

The DVA will ask for medical reports and possibly a special driving assessment to decide whether you can continue driving.

To read more, go to:

Where to find help and support

You can find more information and support services from the following organisations, see also ‘more useful links section’:

The Public Health Agency has also produced a range of information to help support people with a dementia, their families and friends.

This information includes the following publications:

Dementia apps library

The ‘Apps4Dementia’ library is a digital service which groups together safe, trusted apps to provide information and guidance on the condition.

There a number of apps that offer support, self-care of symptoms and enable users to carry on with their day-to-day activities for as long as possible.

More useful links

The information on this page was adapted from original content on NHS website.

Share this page

What do you want to do?
What is your question about?
Do you want a reply?
Your email address
To reply to you, we need your email address
Your feedback

We will not reply to your feedback.  Don't include any personal or financial information, for example National Insurance, credit card numbers, or phone numbers.

This feedback form is for issues with the nidirect website only.

You can use it to report a problem or suggest an improvement to a webpage.

If you have a question about a government service or policy, you should contact the relevant government organisation directly as we don’t have access to information about you held by government departments.

You must be aged 13 years or older - if you’re younger, ask someone with parental responsibility to send the feedback for you.

The nidirect privacy notice applies to any information you send on this feedback form.

Don't include any personal or financial information, for example National Insurance, credit card numbers, or phone numbers.

Plain text only, 750 characters maximum.
Plain text only, 750 characters maximum.

What to do next

Comments or queries about angling can be emailed to anglingcorrespondence@daera-ni.gov.uk 

What to do next

If you have a comment or query about benefits, you will need to contact the government department or agency which handles that benefit.  Contacts for common benefits are listed below.

Carer's Allowance

Call 0800 587 0912
Email 
dcs.incomingpostteamdhc2@nissa.gsi.gov.uk

Discretionary support / Short-term benefit advance

Call 0800 587 2750 
Email 
customerservice.unit@communities-ni.gov.uk

Disability Living Allowance

Call 0800 587 0912 
Email dcs.incomingpostteamdhc2@nissa.gsi.gov.uk

Employment and Support Allowance

Call 0800 587 1377

Jobseeker’s Allowance

Contact your local Jobs & Benefits office

Personal Independence Payment

Call 0800 587 0932

If your query is about another benefit, select ‘Other’ from the drop-down menu above.

What to do next

Comments or queries about the Blue Badge scheme can be emailed to bluebadges@infrastructure-ni.gov.uk or you can also call 0300 200 7818.

What to do next

For queries or advice about careers, contact the Careers Service.

What to do next

For queries or advice about Child Maintenance, contact the Child Maintenance Service.

What to do next

For queries or advice about claiming compensation due to a road problem, contact DFI Roads claim unit.

What to do next

For queries or advice about criminal record checks, email ani@accessni.gov.uk

What to do next

Application and payment queries can be emailed to ema_ni@slc.co.uk

What to do next

For queries or advice about employment rights, contact the Labour Relations Agency.

What to do next

For queries or advice about birth, death, marriage and civil partnership certificates and research, contact the General Register Office Northern Ireland (GRONI) by email gro_nisra@finance-ni.gov.uk

What to do next

For queries about:

If your query is about another topic, select ‘Other’ from the drop-down menu above.

What to do next

For queries or advice about passports, contact HM Passport Office.

What to do next

For queries or advice about Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs), including parking tickets and bus lane PCNs, email dcu@infrastructure-ni.gov.uk

What to do next

For queries or advice about pensions, contact the Northern Ireland Pension Centre.

What to do next

If you wish to report a problem with a road or street you can do so online in this section.

If you wish to check on a problem or fault you have already reported, contact DfI Roads.

What to do next

For queries or advice about historical, social or cultural records relating to Northern Ireland, use the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) enquiry service.

What to do next

For queries or advice about rates, email:
rating@lpsni.gov.uk

For queries or advice about property valuation, email:
valuation@lpsni.gov.uk

For queries or advice about land registry, email:
CustomerInformation.LandRegistration@finance-ni.gov.uk

For mapping queries, email:
Mapping.Helpdesk@finance-ni.gov.uk

What to do next

For queries or advice about  60+ and Senior Citizen SmartPasses (which can be used to get concessionary travel on public transport), contact Smartpass - Translink.