Dementia is a term we hear a lot in discussions about elderly adults. However, what is this condition, and what are the symptoms?
According to the Centers For Disease Control, “Dementia is not a specific disease but is rather a general term for the impaired ability to remember, think, or make decisions that interfere with doing everyday activities. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of condition.” While senior citizens are at the highest risk, it’s not a normal part of aging.
A Variety of Types
Types of this condition include Alzheimer’s, Vascular, Dementia with Lewy bodies, Parkinson, Frontotemporal, and Creutzfeldt- Jakob. Typical symptoms with this instability include agitation, depression, and sleep irregularities. People exhibit social problems, memory loss, and the inability to use words with meaning.
The biggest risk factor for dementia is age. While the process is not fully understood, regular wear and tear on the brain can add up. This can lead to big problems as we get older. Additionally, another strong risk factor is family history. Like many other diseases, having it in your family line makes you more susceptible.
Lifestyle also plays a factor. Having an unhealthy diet, high blood pressure, alcohol, tobacco, and substance abuse, and head injuries all increase your risk.
There are a lot of types of dementia. However, they share some general signs.
- Problems with memory, attention, and social interaction
- Perception changes that aren’t normally expected with age
- Loss of ability to do everyday things by themselves
- Use of strange words to describe items
- Getting lost in places that should be familiar to them
Suspicious of Dementia?
If you’re worrying about a loved one, the best thing you can do is talk to them. Be open and honest about your worries, and ask them if they’ve experienced any symptoms. It also helps to have a medical assessment made, that way you can be sure. Planning around someone’s needs as they age is already a challenge, and dementia only adds to it.
You don’t have to feel alone in the struggle against dementia. Reach out to us today for help. We have experience providing excellent care for seniors with a variety of needs, dementia included. You don’t have to handle dementia alone!