The most characteristic impairment in Dementia is severe memory loss. All three types of memory may be affected: immediate, recent, and remote. In early Dementia, recent memory is most severely affected with immediate and remote memory remaining relatively intact.
You may be able to repeat a telephone number right after you hear it and remember the telephone number of your childhood home, but cannot remember your son’s current telephone number, no matter how many times you struggle to learn it.
As the dementia advances, no aspect of memory is spared. The person may forget even the most basic personal facts like what line of work he previously performed, or the city in which he was born, or the ages of his children. Eventually, and most tragically, he may be unable to figure out his relationships to his wife and children and regards them as strangers.
You have Dementia if:
– You have serious memory impairment you are unable to learn new things, or recall facts or events, or recognize people you previously knew.
– Difficulty understanding other’s people speech or in being understood by them.
– Inability to recognize objects despite being able to see, hear, touch, taste, or smell them.
– Inability to integrate complex motor activities despite having the muscular strength and coordination to do them.
Causes of Dementia
Dementia always has as its underlying cause either a medical condition or the impact of a substance. Don’t make mistake of attributing severe memory problems and other serious intellectual deficits occurring on an elderly family member to the inevitable ravages of time. A thorough medical evaluation is always essential to see if the underlying problem can be corrected. Here is a list of Dementia causes:
– Alzheimer’s Disease
– Vascular Dementia
– Dementia Related to AIDS
– Dementia due to Parkinson’s Disease
– Dementia Caused by Alcohol
– Dementia Caused by Other Substances
How to cure Dementia
People with Dementia are sensitive to daily stress, emotional, environmental, and physical and are especially prone to develop Delirium. The best cure for Delirium is to prevent its occurrence. Delirium prevention includes making sure that people with Dementia are healthy, well nourished, and well hydrated, live in a quit, well lit, uncrowded, safe, well structured environment with orienting clues such as windows, clocks, calendars, and pictures of family members, and take their medications regularly and at doses that reflect age, size, medical status, and other medicines that are also being taken.
Timely intervention is needed to prevent a reversible Dementia from turning into a irreversible one and to reduce the further progression of cognitive impairment. Although there are no cures for the underlying cause of Alzheimer’s Dementia, there are two medications Cognex and Aricept that may be helpful in temporarily slowing the loss memory.
There is also some evidence that high doses of vitamin E may reduce damage to brain cells. Researchers are currently hard at work in their search for a medication that will address the underlying cause and stop this ravaging disease in its tracks.
A Number of treatments are available to address the associated symptoms that often go along with the Dementia. Depression is an especially common complication and can be markedly improved with antidepressant medication, usually at much lower doses than used in younger and healthier patients.
Although people with Dementia often have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, sleeping pills should be used not at all or only very briefly because of their potential for triggering memory loss, falls, or Delirium. The use of low doses of trazodone seems to the least risky of the available choices. The agitation and psychotic symptoms that sometimes accompany Dementia respond well to anti psychotic medications. Mood stabilizing drugs are also sometimes useful in reducing aggressive behavior and agitation.