Understanding Dementia

Dementia is a general term, not a specific disease, which is used to describe a set of symptoms that are progressive and lead to the deterioration of an individual’s ability to process and recall information, reason, make decision and use language.

iStock 000004111697SmallDementia is caused by the death of brain nerve cells in the cerebral cortex which can be brought on by strokes, head trauma, Pick’s Disease, Huntington’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis or Alzheimer’s.

While often used interchangeably, Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia are not the same.  Alzheimer’s is a progressive and degenerative disease that attacks the brain’s neurons and accelerates loss of memory, intellectual function and behavioral change.

The progression of dementia depends upon the cause and the individual.  Different diagnoses will progress in different manners and stages. While there are no cures for dementia, studies and research have shown that different drugs, therapies, diets and activities help to slow the progression.

If you or a loved one is experiencing signs of dementia, you are not alone.  A wealth of knowledge and resources are dedicated to helping your family understand the path that lies ahead. 

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