Difference between Dementia and Alzheimer’s

Dementia (senile) and Alzheimer’s are two diseases that are known to primarily affect the elderly. There is widespread confusion about these two conditions due to the similarity of their clinical pictures. Although both are similar, there are small but significant differences between suffering from one and the other.

Comparison table

Description Dementia is a chronic-progressive syndrome that involves a considerable decrease in cognitive function. This affects the abilities to think, remember and reason. In addition, communication, intellect, behavior, judgment, and sense of direction are affected. A person with dementia may have trouble carrying out everyday tasks independently. Therefore, dementia is a condition that prevents those who suffer from it from leading a normal life. Alzheimer’s is the best known form of dementia. It can be said that it is a type of dementia, in fact. It is a neurodegenerative condition that mainly affects memory, thinking and behavior. As neurons die and different areas of the brain atrophy, the disease worsens. After diagnosis, the patient is expected to live an average of 10 years. However, being a degenerative process, it is imperative that the patient is provided with a good quality of life.
  • Loss of spatio-temporal orientation.
  • Gradual loss of self-identity.
  • Sudden and unexpected changes in personality and behavior. The person with dementia can present psychotic, depressive and delusional features.
  • Language disorders.
  • impairments in motor skills.
  • Short-term memory failures.
  • The first symptom is the person’s inability to acquire new memories.
  • There is mental confusion.
  • Irritability and aggressiveness.
  • Language disorders.
  • Short-term memory loss.
  • Tendency to isolate yourself from those around you.
  • Gradual loss of some biological functions.
Treatment Although there is no cure for dementia, there are a number of treatments that can significantly improve the quality and life expectancy of the patient. It is worth mentioning that despite its severity, dementia is not as unforgiving as Alzheimer’s. Although it can be overwhelming for those who suffer from it and those around them, the truth is that with proper treatment the patient can live a decent life. It is important, however, to surround the person with a stable, understanding, tolerant and loving environment. Keeping the person busy with simple activities can be a good way to help them feel good about themselves. Although there is no known cure, it is possible to improve the patient’s quality of life. There are, for example, some medications that inhibit some enzymes responsible for breaking down neurotransmitters that affect memory and other cognitive functions. It is necessary that a doctor is the one who supports the treatment, since these medications can have serious adverse effects. It is also recommended to surround the person with a peaceful environment. The family plays a very important role and it is recommended that they give the greatest possible stability to the patient. There are also some cognitive-behavioral therapies whose purpose is to reduce cognitive distortions.
Forecast Dementia itself has no cure, nor can its progressive evolution be reversed. Alzheimer’s also has no cure and is considered a terminal illness.

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