Differences between Dementia and Alzheimer’s

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Differences between dementia and alzheimer’s. Many people identify both neurodegenerative diseases as very aggressive and incurable. We know that they are not the same disease and we also identify each one very well. Both diseases are familiar to us because of the large number of cases of people who suffer from them. However, one commonly misunderstood aspect is the difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s. Therefore, we must dedicate a complete space to describe the differences of both diseases that are as common as they are familiar.

Differences between Dementia and Alzheimer’s

The main characteristic that we should know about senile dementia and that differentiates it from Alzheimer’s is the probability of improvement. In some specific cases of dementia it is possible that there is an improvement of the patient. This will depend on the origin, type and nature. In the case of Alzheimer’s, the only thing that can be aspired to is to slow its progress.

Some forms of Dementia come from Alzheimer’s. Another important fact that many people are unaware of is that some dementias may originate as a cause of Alzheimer’s. This is because senile dementia may arise due to small strokes in the brain or brain tumors.

Dementia can also arise from Parkinson’s disease. This disease is very similar to Alzheimer’s and can cause the appearance of some dementias.

The definition of dementia must be taken into account. Since it is the deterioration of mental abilities of a person in which both their behavior and their knowledge are damaged. On the other hand, Alzheimer’s is considered a variation of senile dementia, with the particularity that it ends in death after suffering the different phases.

Similarities between Dementia and Alzheimer’s

When looking at the differences between dementia and Alzheimer’s, we must know the similarities that can make us think that they are the same disease.

In both dementia and Alzheimer’s, the patient loses their short-term. Long term memory may persist for longer in both cases, that is to say, the events that occurred years ago. Both diseases share this symptom.

Another common symptom is the ability to socialize and relate to each other of the patients who suffer them. Although it is true, in the cases of dementia it is more serious or this symptom is manifested more assiduously.

In the case of dementia the loss of socialization of the patient is more manifested. We must bear in mind that people suffering from Alzheimer’s suffer from cases of aggressiveness, psychiatric problems, paranoia or hallucinations. It is true that these cases are not the most abundant or they are manifested in advanced stages of Alzheimer’s. Physical problems are also more common.

Common risks in dementia and alzheimer’s

As expected, there are potential risks that are common to both diseases. For example, the possibility of suffering from heart disease or stroke. In other words, there is a greater risk of suffering from cardiovascular diseases.

For this reason, there are common recommendations to avoid contracting dementia or Alzheimer’s, such as exercising, stimulating the mind, or controlling one’s diet. However, it is true that these are very general recommendations.

The most important thing is to have family members or caregivers of Alzheimer’s who are familiar with the disease and are able to treat it without falling into the syndrome of the burned caregiver. The same happens with people who assume the responsibility of taking care of dementia, since it requires a very concrete experience as well as a wide one. Since not all the suitable caregivers are well qualified to deal with these illnesses and in many cases they are overcome by the complexity of the cases.

Common Symptoms:

Due to the many similarities between dementia and Alzheimer’s (we have already indicated that Alzheimer’s is the main cause of dementia), the symptoms of both neurodegenerative diseases are almost identical. These are some of the symptoms:

Loss of memory.

Disorientation of time and place.

Difficulty in performing daily tasks.

Problems in the vision.

Difficulty in speech.

Decreased energy level.

Complications in reasoning or problem solving.

Attention deficit.

Difficulty in remembering

Mood swings.

Eating behavior disorder.

Alteration of the pattern of the dream.

Symptoms related to alzheimer’s tend to be more serious than those of the dementia.

Anybody who begins to present the previous symptoms in a permanent and aggravated way will need more attention and supervision than if the symptoms appear in an intermittent way.

Aggressive Dementia

Dementia appears and evolves progressively, so that its progression can be divided into three phases: initial, intermediate and advanced. In this last phase, in addition to suffering serious cognitive damage, the patient may present episodes of aggression.

Unfortunately there is no cure for aggressive dementia. The key to facing this new and hard stage of dementia is to know the patient and know how to adapt to his or her needs.

To be able to do this in the best way, we expose you several advices:

Do not scold the patient or force them to do things.

Try to divert his attention to another matter to get him to calm down.

Encourage empathy.

Create a routine with which he feels distracted and comfortable. Improve the environment: avoid noise, disorder, physical barriers…etc.

Always have personal objects close to him that can make him regain his orientation.

Provide cognitive stimulation: preparation of educational and leisure activities.

It is also important for the caregiver to be concerned about his/her own health, since aggressive dementia causes a high level of stress, exhaustion and fatigue in family members and caregivers, who need to know how to manage it in order to provide the best care.