Do you feel like you’re losing your memory? Have you forgotten things more often than usual? If so, You’re not alone. Memory loss can be a normal part of aging, but it can also signify something more serious. Most often, memory loss is due to aging, but there can be many other factors, such as stress, medications, sleep deprivation, depression, anxiety, or other health conditions. However, this article will discuss a significant reason for memory loss and many other mental abilities, i.e., dementia. So let’s dive into the forms of dementia
Introduction to Dementia
Dementia is a progressive and chronic brain disorder that results in memory loss and thinking and behavior issues. Dementia itself isn’t a disease, but it is a group of symptoms that severely affect your memory, thinking, and social abilities to disturb your daily life. It is a degenerative brain disorder that results in the deterioration of cognitive abilities and physical function. Common symptoms include memory loss, confusion, and difficulty speaking and understanding. There is no single cause of dementia, but it is most often caused by disease or injury to the brain. The most common type is Alzheimer’s, which accounts for 60-80% of all cases. Other causes include Lewy body disease, frontotemporal dementia, and vascular dementia.
Forms of Dementia
Dementia has many different types. The treatment of dementia depends upon the type that you’ve. Here are the most prominent types;
● Alzheimer’s Disease
More than 6.5 million Americans have received are living with Alzheimer’s. When people hear the term “dementia,” they likely think of Alzheimer’s. If you know someone with Alzheimer’s, you might notice symptoms such as memory loss and difficulty completing familiar tasks. At first, the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease are mild. But over time, they become worse. Your friend or relative might:
- Confused about where they are or what day or year it is
- Have problems speaking or writing
- Lose things and be unable to backtrack to find them
- Show poor judgment
- Mood and personality changes
● Vascular Dementia
Vascular dementia is another prevalent type of dementia. It occurs when there are problems with the blood supply to the brain. This can happen because of strokes or mini-strokes. In addition, people with vascular dementia often have a history of heart disease, high blood pressure, or diabetes. The symptoms of vascular dementia appear suddenly after a stroke. Unfortunately, they can also get worse quickly. You might notice that your friend or relative:
- Confused and has trouble communicating
- Difficulty with motor skills (ability to move the body)
- Mood changes
- Loses interest in things
● Mixed Dementia
Mixed dementia is a combination of Alzheimer’s disease and another form of dementia, such as vascular dementia. This is also one of the common types of dementia in people over age 85. With mixed dementia, you might see symptoms of both Alzheimer’s disease and another form of dementia. For example, your friend or relative might have memory loss, mood changes (symptoms of Alzheimer’s), and problems with motor skills (a sign of vascular dementia).
● Other Types of Dementia
There are other, less common types of dementia. Some examples are:
Dementia with Lewy bodies. This type of dementia causes problems with thinking, movement, behavior, and sleep. In addition, people with this type of dementia might see things that aren’t there or have hallucinations.
Frontotemporal dementia. This type of dementia affects the front part of the brain. This area controls behavior and personality. People with this type of dementia might become more impulsive or make poor decisions.
Parkinson’s disease dementia. This is a nervous system disorder that affects movement. People with this type of dementia might have problems with movement, balance, and coordination. They might also have memory problems and changes in mood and behavior.
Huntington’s disease. Huntington’s disease is a genetic disorder that causes problems with the nervous system. As a result, people with this type of dementia might have issues with movement, thinking, and psychiatric symptoms.
Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. This is a rare, degenerative brain disorder. People with this type of dementia might have problems with movement, behavior, and thinking. They might also have hallucinations.
Risk Factors for Dementia
There are many risk factors for dementia, some of which are modifiable and some are not.
Modifiable risk factors include:
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- social isolation
Unmodifiable risk factors include:
- Family history
- Head injuries
- Previous stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA)
These are just some of the potential risk factors for dementia. It is important to note that having one or more risk factors does not necessarily mean you will develop dementia. Likewise, not having any risk factors does not guarantee you are immune to the condition.
Treatment of Dementia
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to managing dementia, as the needs of each individual will differ depending on the type and severity of their condition. However, some general tips can help:
- Make sure the person with dementia eats a balanced diet and stays hydrated
- Encouraging them to stay active and engaged in activities they enjoy
- Helping them stick to a routine as much as possible
- Providing support and assistance with tasks such as grooming, bathing, and dressing
- Creating a safe environment for them to live in, both inside and outside the home
- Encouraging social interaction and involvement in activities with other people
If you are concerned that your friend or relative may be showing signs of dementia, it is essential to consult with a doctor as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and intervention can slow down the disease and improve the quality of life for the person passing through dementia.
Dementia can be a devastating condition, not just for the person with the disease but for their friends and family. Therefore, if you are concerned that someone you know may be showing signs of dementia, it is always recommended to see a doctor as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and intervention can help slow the progression of dementia and improve the quality of life for the patient with dementia.
Older loved ones who have functional issues that extend beyond typical memory issues need extra care and support. Optimal Senior Care Solutions offers specialty care for seniors in Orange County, CA, who have Alzheimer’s and dementia. To learn more about the services we provide, reach out to us at (949) 535-2211!