Types of Dementia
In today’s blog, ElderCare at Home will go over the various forms of “dementia” or degenerative neurological disorders. In general, degenerative neurological disorders are diseases that impact one’s brain, causing deterioration, memory loss, speech problems, and a host of other symptoms. That being said, the term “dementia” is not a type of disorder. Instead, it stands for an all-encompassing way to define all kinds of degenerative neurological disorders, like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, vascular dementia, etc. In today’s blog, we will go over some of the most common forms of dementia and their respective symptoms. (Note: The appropriateness of the term “dementia” is now being contested as it can sound pejorative. Instead, professionals suggest we utilize the phrase “degenerative neurological disorder.” Despite this effort, “dementia” continues to be used by many medical professionals to refer to these kinds of neurological disorders.)
Alzheimer’s Disease: Alzheimer’s is by far the most common kind of dementia. According to Healthline, between 60 to 80 percent of cases of degenerative neurological disorders are Alzheimer’s. This form of dementia is characterized memory loss, problems with language, and changes in behavior. The material causes of this disease are linked to protein deposits (“plaques”) that buildup in the brain. Scientists are still unsure about why this happens nor do we have a cure for the disease.
Lewy body Dementia (LBD): LBD is another form of dementia that is characterized by the buildup of “Lewy bodies” or protein depositions more specifically known as alpha-synuclein. Much like Alzheimer’s, LBD impacts memory, information processing, language, and sometimes movement. There are two forms of LBD, dementia with Lewy bodies and Parkinson’s disease. The latter of which is known for causing tremors throughout the body. That being said, people who have dementia with Lewy bodies are not necessarily going to develop Parkinson’s.
Frontotermporal Dementia: This kind of dementia is marked by damage to the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain. These parts of the brain are responsible behavior, learning, movement, personality, speech, and language. Behind Alzheimer’s, this kind of dementia is the second most common form.
If you suspect that you or a loved one in your family is experiencing any of the symptoms described above, then it is recommended to go see a primary care physician. You should not be initially alarmed about memory loss and forgetfulness as these are often common symptoms of aging. The only way to know for sure whether a real problem exists is through a medical diagnosis.
If you are interested in learning more about degenerative neurological diseases or about caring for someone who lives with dementia, then you should consider attending ElderCare at Home’s October workshop. You can see the link by clicking here. If you have any more questions, please call 888-285-0093.