Dementia is one of the terrifying diseases that can befall an individual. It robs people of their memories and leaves them lost in a world they no longer recognize, with little understanding of who or where they are.
The types of dementia vary from person to person. Some types lead to death, while others may only cause memory loss. This guide will help you understand what kinds of dementia exist.
Read on to learn.
Alzheimer’s disease causes the most common type of dementia. In fact, about 60%-80% of people with dementia have this disease.
It is responsible for most cases in older adults, and it progressively worsens over time. The signs of dementia caused by Alzheimer’s disease include:
- Memory loss
- Problems communicating or understanding language
- Confusion about where you are or what day it is
- Trouble finding items like your keys
- Repeating questions when asked
- Difficulty performing tasks that were previously easy to do
There are no treatments available that stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. But medications may be prescribed to help manage some dementia symptoms.
You can seek the services of a home health care agency to help you take care of an aging parent.
Vascular dementia is the second most common type of dementia. It occurs when your blood and oxygen flow to your brain is reduced over time due to a series of small strokes or one major stroke.
These types of mini-strokes happen frequently but often go unnoticed. And that’s because they do not always result in symptoms like headaches or memory loss.
But these small issues can add up, leading to difficulties with everyday tasks like driving and eating out at restaurants alone. You might also get lost on the way home from work.
There are no treatments available for vascular dementia, so prevention is key. Eat healthy foods low in fat and salt, exercise regularly, maintain a healthy weight, and avoid smoking cigarettes.
Lewy Body Dementia
This is another common type of dementia that occurs when abnormal proteins build up in your brain. This affects the way you think and move.
Symptoms for this form include:
Visuospatial problems: Trouble judging distance or depth, getting lost easily even if familiar with an area, bumping into things unexpectedly. It may also appear like poor coordination (i.e., tripping over objects that shouldn’t be there).
Movement issues: Unexplainable restlessness during sleep, muscle rigidity/stiffness without pain or discomfort, and tremors, especially in hands.
Cognitive problems: Delusions, hallucinations that are often visual (i.e., seeing things/people who aren’t there), and confusion with time or place.
Like Alzheimer’s disease, there is no cure for Lewy Body Dementia, so treatment focuses on managing symptoms.
Parkinson’s Disease Dementia
This type of dementia affects people who have Parkinson’s disease. This neurological disorder makes movement difficult over time due to the death of brain cells in areas responsible for controlling muscle activity, emotions, and memory.
- Memory loss similar to Alzheimer’s disease
- Problems with planning/organizing which may cause you to lose track of what you are doing
- Difficulty completing tasks at work or home
Currently, there is no treatment available for Parkinson’s disease dementia. But medication can help with some symptoms of this disorder, such as tremors and rigidity/stiffness in muscles.
Types of Dementia Explained
These types of dementia are all different, but they share certain symptoms. If you think that you or a loved one may have dementia, then it is important to see your doctor right away for an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan.
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