| Written by Dr. Regina Asihene |
The term dementia simply means significant memory loss. There are several causes that lead to memory loss that is added to describe dementia:
- Alzheimer’s dementia—due to age
- Amyloid plaques and tangled fibers build up in brain and there is a loss of connection between nerve cells
- Vascular dementia—due to strokes
- It is caused from damage to the vessels that supply blood to the brain
- Lewy body dementia
- Abnormal protein deposits in the brain, called Lewy bodies, affect brain chemistry and lead to problems with behavior, mood, movement and thinking
- Frontotemporal disorders—due to degenerative damage to the brains frontal and temporal lobes
- It happens in people under age 65. Symptoms might include apathy, difficulty communicating, walking or working, emotional changes and impulsive or inappropriate behaviors.
- Alcohol induced dementia
- Parkinson’s induced dementia
Here are some of the warning signs that a person may have dementia:
- Difficulty with everyday tasks
- Everyone makes mistakes, but people with dementia have a hard time concentrating on tasks and finishing them. It becomes difficult to keep track of monthly bills or follow a recipe while cooking
- People with dementia may repeat the same question 15 minutes later or tell the same story multiple times
- Communication problems
- People with dementia may have trouble joining in conversations or following along with them. They may stop abruptly in the middle of a thought or struggle to think of words or name of objects
- Getting lost
- People with dementia may get lost while driving or even daily walks. This happens due to difficulty of visual and spatial abilities
- Personality changes
- People with dementia may act unusually anxious, confused, fearful or suspicious, become upset easily, lose interest in activities and seem depressed
- Confusion about time and place
- People with dementia forget where they are or cannot remember how they got there. Days of the week become difficult
- Troubling behavior
- People with dementia have increasingly poor judgment when handling money or neglect grooming and cleanliness.
Where to get help
If your loved one is showing any of these symptoms or any other troubling symptoms, please contact a primary care physician. A referral to a neurologist, geriatrician or geriatric psychiatrist may be recommended.
Majestic Gardens Living has a specialist of Internal Medicine/geriatrician directly on site daily to help. Majestic can schedule a tour just by calling 386-243-9993.