When I first think about Dementia and Alzheimer’s, I typically think that these terms relate more to the elderly. What really is the difference between the two? According to our text, dementia is a permanent loss of mental ability that is serious enough to impair daily living tasks. People who have one of the many conditions that produce dementia experience problems in memory, reasoning, and planning that dramatically affect their behavior. Alzheimer’s disease is a mild cognitive impairment which with time will progress into Alzheimer’s disease. Dementia is a word for a group of symptoms caused by disorders that affect the brain. It is not a specific disease. People with dementia may not be able to think well enough to do normal activities, such as getting dressed or eating. They may lose their ability to solve problems or control their emotions. Their personalities may change. They may become agitated or see things that are not there. Memory loss is a common symptom of dementia. However, memory loss by itself does not mean you have dementia. People with dementia have serious problems with two or more brain functions, such as memory and language. Many different diseases can cause dementia, including Alzheimer's disease and stroke. Drugs are available to treat some of these diseases. While these drugs cannot cure dementia or repair brain damage, they may improve symptoms or slow down the disease. Alzheimer’s disease (AD) begins slowly. It first involves the parts of the brain that control thought, memory and language. People with AD may have trouble remembering things that happened recently or names of people they know. Over time, symptoms get worse. People may not recognize family members or have trouble speaking, reading or writing. They may forget how to brush their teeth or comb their hair. Later on, they may become anxious or aggressive, or wander away from home. Eventually, they need total care. This can cause great stress for family members who must care...
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