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what is meant by the term dementia
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Updated 5/16/2013 1:28:39 PM
7 Answers/Comments
Dementia is a group of symptoms caused by gradual death of brain cells. The loss of cognitive abilities that occurs with dementia leads to impairments in memory, reasoning, planning, and behavior. While the overwhelming number of people with dementia are elderly, dementia is not an inevitable part of aging; instead, dementia is caused by specific brain diseases. Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common cause, followed by vascular or multi-infarct dementia.
The prevalence of dementia is difficult to determine, partly because of differences in definition among different studies and partly because there is some normal decline in functional ability with age. The prevalence of dementia roughly doubles for every five years of age beginning at age 60. Dementia affects about 1% of people between ages 60 and 64, 5-8% of all people between ages 65 and 74, up to 20% of those between 75 and 84, and between 30% and 50% of those age 85 and older. About 60% of nursing home patients have dementia. The Alzheimer's Association estimates that in 2007, 5.1 million Americans were living with a diagnosis of AD. That number expected to grow substantially as the population ages.
The cost of dementia can be considerable. While most people with dementia are retired and are not affected by income losses from their disease, the cost of care often is enormous. Financial burdens include lost wages for family caregivers, medical supplies and drugs, and home modifications to ensure safety. Nursing home care may cost several thousand dollars a month or more. The psychological cost is not as easily quantifiable but can be even more profound. The person with dementia loses control of many of the essential features of his life and personality, and loved ones lose a family member even as they continue to cope with the burdens of increasing dependence and unpredictability.




Added 5/15/2013 10:51:18 PM
Dementia is a group of symptoms caused by gradual death of brain cells. The loss of cognitive abilities that occurs with dementia leads to impairments in memory, reasoning, planning, and behavior. While the overwhelming number of people with dementia are elderly, dementia is not an inevitable part of aging; instead, dementia is caused by specific brain diseases. Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common cause, followed by vascular or multi-infarct dementia.
The prevalence of dementia is difficult to determine, partly because of differences in definition among different studies and partly because there is some normal decline in functional ability with age. The prevalence of dementia roughly doubles for every five years of age beginning at age 60. Dementia affects about 1% of people between ages 60 and 64, 5-8% of all people between ages 65 and 74, up to 20% of those between 75 and 84, and between 30% and 50% of those age 85 and older. About 60% of nursing home patients have dementia. The Alzheimer's Association estimates that in 2007, 5.1 million Americans were living with a diagnosis of AD. That number expected to grow substantially as the population ages.
The cost of dementia can be considerable. While most people with dementia are retired and are not affected by income losses from their disease, the cost of care often is enormous. Financial burdens include lost wages for family caregivers, medical supplies and drugs, and home modifications to ensure safety. Nursing home care may cost several thousand dollars a month or more. The psychological cost is not as easily quantifiable but can be even more profound. The person with dementia loses control of many of the essential features of his life and personality, and loved ones lose a family member even as they continue to cope with the burdens of increasing dependence and unpredictability.



Added 5/15/2013 10:52:05 PM
This answer has been flagged as incorrect.
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Dementia describes a group of symptoms that are caused by changes in brain function. Dementia symptoms may include asking the same questions repeatedly; becoming lost in familiar places; being unable to follow directions; getting disoriented about time, people, and places; and neglecting personal safety, hygiene, and nutrition. People with dementia lose their abilities at different rates.

Dementia is caused by many conditions. Some conditions that cause dementia can be reversed, and others cannot. The two most common forms of dementia in older people are Alzheimer’s disease and multi-infarct dementia (sometimes called vascular dementia). These types of dementia are irreversible, which means they cannot be cured. (Symptoms associated with dementia can often be treated, however.)

Some conditions may mimic dementia, but are actually reversible conditions. Reversible conditions with symptoms of dementia can be caused by a high fever, dehydration, vitamin deficiency and poor nutrition, bad reactions to medicines, problems with the thyroid gland, or a minor head injury. Medical conditions like these can be serious and should be treated by a doctor as soon as possible.

Sometimes older people have emotional problems that can be mistaken for dementia. Feeling sad, lonely, worried, or bored may be more common for older people facing retirement or coping with the death of a spouse, relative, or friend. Adapting to these changes leaves some people feeling confused or forgetful. Emotional problems can be eased by supportive friends and family, or by professional help from a doctor or therapist.

Added 5/15/2013 11:19:57 PM
Dementia describes a group of symptoms that are caused by changes in brain function. Dementia symptoms may include asking the same questions repeatedly; becoming lost in familiar places; being unable to follow directions; getting disoriented about time, people, and places; and neglecting personal safety, hygiene, and nutrition.
Added 5/16/2013 10:34:07 AM
Dementia means: Deprived of the mind, is caused by conditions which damage brain cells, It is progressive, damaged brain cells cause difficulties in brain function, it is not a normal aspect of ageing. Not all brain cells are affected. Individuals with dementia have abilities as well as difficulties. Damaged brain cells cause difficulties in brain function known as cognitive impairments. Every individuals experience of dementia is different.
Added 5/16/2013 1:28:39 PM
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