What is dementia
“Dementia” is a generic term for a range of symptoms caused by damage to the brain. It can manifest itself in different ways, depending on which parts of the brain are affected. Normally, the person’s memory and ability to plan and carry out everyday tasks are impaired. Language and the person’s concept of time and orientation capacity are other so-called cognitive capacities that are adversely affected. Worry, depression and behavioural changes can also be part of the pattern of the illness. The symptoms make it difficult for people with dementia to cope with life without support from those close to them.
The term “dementia” describes a set of symptoms that include loss of memory, mood changes, and problems with communication and reasoning. There are many types of dementia. The most common are Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia.
Different types of dementia
Many dementias are progressive, meaning symptoms start out slowly and gradually get worse. If you or a loved one is experiencing memory difficulties or other changes in thinking skills, don’t ignore them. See a doctor soon to determine the cause. Professional evaluation may detect a treatable condition. And even if symptoms suggest dementia, early diagnosis allows a person to get the maximum benefit from available treatments and provides an opportunity to volunteer for clinical trials or studies. It also provides time to plan for the future.