Dementia and Alzheimer's Disease: The Differences
Dementia is characterized by impaired cognitive function that hinders ones ability to think, remember, and reason. Over time, dementia interferes with ones ability to perform basic daily functions.
Dementia is most commonly caused by the onset of Alzheimers disease, which is an incurable, degenerative condition that cripples the brains memory function, and eventually, all reasoning and thinking ability. Alzheimers disease is irreversible and generally affects those aged 60 or older. Over time, a person suffering from Alzheimers will succumb to severe brain damage and lose the ability to perform all daily activities. A series of small strokes can also result in dementia, according to the National Institute of Aging.
Temporary occurrences of dementia can also affect individuals under certain conditions, such as extreme cases of dehydration, fever, and kidney, thyroid or liver diseases. Over time, chronic alcoholism can impair memory recall as well. Brain infections, tumors, and clots that attack the portion of the brain associated with memory can also hinder cognitive abilities. Side effects of medication and a deficiency of b12 are also known causes of dementia. Unlike Alzheimers, some forms of dementia can be reversed by treating the underlying condition.