Denver Home Care Blog

Understanding the Stages of Memory Loss in Seniors with Dementia in Wheat Ridge, CO and Surrounding Areas

Pay attention to these stages of memory loss in order to help your loved one get tested for dementia and find dementia care options in Wheat Ridge, Denver and surrounding areas in Colorado

Understanding the stages of dementia is important because it can give you a clearer picture of what your loved one might be going through and help you find the right dementia care services in Wheat Ridge and throughout the Denver area for your loved one.

The following categorization is based on the Global Deterioration Scale, also known as the Reisberg Scale, developed by Dr. Barry Reisberg at the University of New York.

Stage 1: Normal / No Dementia

An individual is able to function normally and shows no signs of memory loss.

Stage 2: Very Mild Forgetfulness

This stage is associated with age-related forgetfulness, fairly common in older adults. For example, forgetting names or displacing objects may often occur.

Stage 3: Mild Cognitive Impairments

At this stage, forgetfulness becomes more apparent. While the person is still capable to manage their daily routine independently, a range of symptoms can be observed. Organization and planning become hard to handle, increasing the risk of medication errors. It is also a stage where friends and family start to clearly notice the changes in their loved one's behavior.

Stage 4: Moderate Dementia

For most people with moderate dementia, normal everyday tasks like shopping, cleaning, and preparing meals are almost impossible to accomplish without assistance. As memory loss intensifies, a person may have trouble with more complex tasks as well as properly expressing themselves. Withdrawal from social interaction is also more evident.

Typically, diagnosis in this stage is very accurate, as interviews and exams show clear cognitive issues.

Stage 5: Moderately Severe Dementia

Entering this stage of dementia means a senior will have trouble recalling even the most basic information such as phone numbers or their own address. Because of this, they will need assistance in all areas of daily living. If not earlier, most families opt for professional dementia care in this stage.

Stage 6: Severe Dementia

By this stage, receiving full-time care is a must for most seniors. They need help with all sorts of activities, from dressing to meal preparation. Sanitary issues may arise as a result of an unkempt home and poor hygiene. A person may often become confused, get lost, wander or become increasingly paranoid and hostile. This stage is very difficult for family members, who in most cases cannot meet the needs of their loved ones alone.

Stage 7: Very Severe Dementia

In the final stage, all patients require professional dementia care. Symptoms are characterized by loss of motor and cognitive skills, including basic motor control and the ability to control facial expressions, speak, or be aware of one's surroundings. For this reason, activities like moving, eating and talking become nearly impossible.


Early detection is the key to adequately managing cognitive decline and slowing the progression of the disease. It can also enable you to plan your approach to care in a timely manner, whether you opt for a nursing home, support from friends and family or in-home dementia care from trained professionals at Visiting Angels Denver.

Contact our Wheat Ridge, CO office to learn how we can help your loved one today.

Visiting Angels provides quality memory care for seniors throughout Arvada, Aurora, Denver, Glendale, Golden, Lakewood, Wheat Ridge and the surrounding areas of Colorado.

Each Visiting Angels agency is a franchise that is independently owned and operated. The Franchisor, Living Assistance Services Inc., does not control or manage the day to day business operations of any Visiting Angels franchised agency.