Difference between Dementia and Alzheimer

by cadabamshospital

20 September,2016 | 4 years read

Alzheimer dementia treatment

Difference between Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease, Symptoms of Dementia, Symptoms of AD

Alzheimer’s disease and Dementia aren’t the same. Thought both may show similar symptoms. Many people including professionals also sometimes tend to use these term interchangeably. To say it in the most simplest way, Dementia is a group of symptoms that affect mental abilities of an individual and Alzheimer’s disease is a type of Dementia that affects language, memory and thought.

Dementia: Symptoms & Treatment

Initially Dementia was known as “senility” which was used to refer to cognitive change with an advanced age. Dementia is an umbrella term, a group of symptoms which includes difficulty in cognitive abilities such as memory, language, thinking, problem solving planning and judgment. These difficulties are noticeable and make it harder for an individual to carry out their daily activities.

Dementia symptoms are caused by brain damage. These damages are caused by different diseases. The type of Dementia depends on the type disease that caused brain damage.  Among all the types, Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of Dementia. Other types of Dementia are Parkinson’s disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal dementia and dementia with Lewy bodies.

Although Dementia or Alzheimer’s disease is not considered as a part of normal aging, risk increases as you age. Individuals can have more than one form of Dementia, known as mixed dementia.

Clear differences can be made at the initial early stages of the disease. For example, low attention span and visual hallucinations are early symptoms of dementia with Lewy Bodies and forgetfulness is the early symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. However as time passes by, the disease advances and more areas of the brain gets affected, by this time, difference between the causes of dementia become subtle.

Alzheimer’s disease: Symptoms & Treatment

Alzheimer’s disease is progressive in nature. It slowly affects the brain causing impairment in cognitive abilities and memory. The cause of this is unknown. In Alzheimer’s disease there is formation of abnormal structures in the brain, these structures blocks communication between the brain cells leading to death of brain cells. It not possible to diagnose someone with this disease with complete accuracy, but the patient is diagnosed as ‘probable Alzheimer’s disease’.

The symptoms ofdementia and Alzheimer’s can overlap, but there are some differences. Similar symptoms include decreased ability to think, impairment in communication and memory.

Symptoms of Alzheimer’s mostly include difficulty in remembering people and conversations, forgetfulness, poor judgment, time and place confusion, difficulty in doing tasks such as cooking, bathing or grooming and impaired language.

The treatment depends on the type of Dementia. For Alzheimer’s, currently, there is no cure available but there are medication that help slow down the symptoms and therapies and interventions that enable them to engage in daily tasks with more ease.

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