Memory Loss and The Early Stages

Memory Loss and The Early Stages

In the Early Stages (1 & 2) of dementia, your loved one may be forgetful of small tasks or remembering plans they routinely used to do.

“When is it garbage day? When was Sally going to visit? What day is it today? Have I taken my Medication today?”

Loss of memory can be extremely distressing for families, as they witness their loved ones lose their independence and find they need to rely on those around them for day-to-day support.

There are several tactics that can be executed to help a loved one keep confidence and their ability to care for themselves as long as possible, allowing them to stay at home longer.


How Can I Help My Loved One?

  • Be Patient and Loving even when frustrated.
The changes your loved one is experiencing can be frustrating. Try to keep calm and remember that they are not intentionally acting the way they are. Be there to support and love them unconditionally.
Seek out support groups and speak to others who have experienced what you are going through. Feel free to reach out to us at We would love to talk to you and help guide you to resources that may make this journey a little easier.
  • Help your loved one set up a regular routine.
Use the Memory Aid tools and tactics described below to assist in simplifying the day and tasks. Setting up a regular routine is critical as the disease progresses, preventing rough transitions and sharp declines that come with them.
    • Use memory aids, assistive technologies to reduce forgetfulness and confusion.
    • Learn how to best communicate with your loved one.

    Include cues and prompts, and try to give context, instead of asking vague questions. For example, 'It must be a while since breakfast. Are you hungry?' rather than 'Have you had breakfast?'

    Keep questions simple and specific: 'Do you want tea or coffee?' rather than, 'What would you like to drink?' This helps the person to make a choice by narrowing down options
    • Focus on one thing at a time: giving the person too much information may be overwhelming. Keep information simple, and repeat it often (if necessary). Reduce distractions such as background noise.

    Easy to Implement Memory Aids & Assistive Technologies

    1. KalendarKards Memory Support System:

    The KalendarKards Memory Support System is a fully customizable memory support system that uses cards to plan out and keep track of tasks throughout the day.
     The physically representation of a to-do list, the system keeps the user focused on only one task at a time while allowing them the flexibility to see the whole week if needed.
    With the system, the user only has to worry about what is on their card at the time, making it easy to keep focused and simplifying the day. It even comes with a wristband so that throughout the day, your loved one can remember to visit the KalendarKard system.
    With the help of loved ones, they can fill in the Activity Journal – setting the routine for the week and keeping a record of how the week should be structured. It even becomes a fun weekly activity to do together with your loved one to help them remember what they normally do.
    What we love about the system is that it is less time consuming than journals or sticky notes to customize each day or week and it leaves the calendar and tasks in one specific place, reducing the need for it to get lost or forgotten.



    Click here for more information on the KalendarKards Memory Support System.


    2. Sticky Notes and To-Do Lists:

    Sticky notes and to-do lists can be easily placed around the house as reminders to do things such as making sure the stove is turned off after cooking, or making sure the doors are locked after coming into the house.

    3. Keeping a Journal:

    Similar to sticky notes and to-do lists – having your loved one keep a journal of what needs to be done or what has happened throughout the day will help set a routine and keep them focused on upcoming tasks.


    4. Notifications on Mobile Phones:

    Use Alarms on mobile phone to set reminders throughout the day for your loved one. You can label the Alarm so your loved one can know what the notification is for.
    For instructions on how to do this:

    For IPhone

    For Android


    5. Lost Items Tracking Devices:

    Tracking devices such as the TILE  make it easy to find misplaced items such as keys, wallet, purses, and books. The location of the items can be seen using a mobile application, which can trigger the tile to beep so the item can be found.


    Emotionally Supporting your Loved One

    The Alzheimer’s Society provides these great tips for how to emotionally support your loved one. We’ve included some of the tips we really like here: 

    • Encourage the person to talk about how they are feeling.
    • Support the person with any frustration they may be feeling, for example by talking through issues and looking for ways to manage them.
    • Support the person to cope with the difficulties they face on a day-to-day basis, rather than focusing on what may happen in the future.
    • Support the person to focus on what they can still do, and encourage them to continue doing these things.
    • Encourage the person to continue spending time with other people, and to take part in meaningful activities as much as possible.
    • At times, it may be best to change the conversation or activity to try and remove any frustration the person may be feeling. Do this sensitively - it is important not to undermine the person or dismiss their feelings.
    • Avoid telling the person they have heard the information before.
    • Ask yourself whether it really matters if the person remembers a recent conversation or event. Forcing the matter can makes things worse.


    Contact Us

    Reach out to us at for any questions or advice for you or your loved one!


    Other Resources:

    Alzheimer’s Society – Coping with memory Loss
    Alzheimer’s Society – Assistive Technology
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