There is a thin line between memory loss and dementia, especially when it is accompanied by age. If you are taking care of an elder, it is important to know what ails them as each of these cases ought to be handled differently. Most importantly, you should be aware of the cause, symptoms, and possible recourse.
Is it a normal part of aging?
Considering that either of these ailments is primarily associated with the aged, does it qualify them as a normal part of aging? According to the Alzheimer’s Society Canada, close to 40% of all persons past 65 years, experience a different form of memory loss and it it is only normal if it is not accompanied or caused by a medical condition. To differentiate Alzheimer’s, memory loss, and dementia this article explores each of their causes and symptoms.
Most people grow forgetful as they age and they don’t necessarily have to be suffering from dementia. However, the condition is only mere memory loss if it isn’t radical. For instance, with memory loss, the victim only tends to forget things they consider unimportant to them and others that happened a long time ago.
Memory loss symptoms and causes
A person with a poor concentration doesn’t notice changes around them, therefore, doesn’t see or retain as much. This may be a cause and also a symptom of memory loss.
-Stress and depression
Stress and depression cause slowed concentration and loss of interest in the happenings around the victim. Until the depression is treated, your elder might experience varying surges of memory loss. This can also be a cause or a symptom of the condition
Dementia is a grave and advanced form of memory loss that shouldn’t be taken lightly as it may be signaling the onset of Alzheimer’s. Dementia is classified as a mental illness that gradually erodes critical brain functions including the understanding and judgment abilities as well as the rationality in thinking. It is a progressive disease that often results in Alzheimer’s.
-Severe loss of memory
Some dementia patients will even forget a conversation you had yesterday. They forget some of the most important events in their life like birthdays and grow irritated with the fact that they can’t remember.
-Negligence of personal care
As dementia progresses, the patients tend to neglect even the most basic personal care like bathing and require assistance with almost every undertaking.
-Disorientation and lack of communication skills
If your senior is exhibiting disorientation and tends to get lost in some of the most familiar places like their neighborhood, they may have dementia. At this point, they are also probably unable to follow instructions and have difficulties with rational thinking which leads to poor communication. They may also end up asking the same question and get angry if they don’t receive the desired answer.
-Diagnosis and Cure
Memory loss and dementia are closely related to one other with negligible differences. It is, therefore, imperative that your elder visits a doctor for proper diagnosis. Nevertheless, you should go for the diagnosis alive with the fact dementia is a progressive disease that only signals the onset of Alzheimer’s. The only prescriptions available temporarily improve dementia symptoms, but none has been proven to alleviate them.