Dementia vs Alzheimer’s – What Is The Difference?
Learning the difference between
The Two is Important
… so we can help those living with Alzheimer’s,
along with their families & caregivers,understand what is Normal Age-related Memory Loss(or, mild cognitive impairment)and what is not.
Alzheimer’s is a specific disease. Dementia is not.
Dementia vs. Alzheimer’s – What Is The Difference?
What is Dementia?
- Dementia is a decline in mental ability that interferes with living daily life. It includes a decline in memory, reasoning or other thinking skills.
- Dementia is not a normal part of aging. It is caused by damage to brain cells that affects their ability to communicate, that, in turn, affects a person’s thinking, behavior and feelings. Symptoms gradually worsen over a number of years.
- There are many types of dementia and there are many conditions that can cause it. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia.
What is Alzheimer’s Dementia?
- Alzheimer’s is the most common cause of dementia and accounts for 60-80% of dementia cases.
- Alzheimer’s is a degenerative brain disease caused by cell damage which then causes complex changes in the brain. This leads to dementia symptoms which gradually worsen over time.
- Alzheimer’s is not a normal part of aging. The greatest known risk factor is age, with the majority of those with Alzheimer’s being 65 and older.
- Alzheimer’s worsens over time. Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease that starts with mild memory loss. The disease damages the part of the brain that remembers new information. As the symptoms worsen, most people lose their ability to have a conversation and can no longer respond to their environment. Symptoms can include: disorientation, confusion, problems with vision and behavioral changes — even speaking, swallowing, standing up and walking become difficult or impossible.
- Alzheimer’s is the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S.
- A person with Alzheimer’s typically lives 4 – 8 years after diagnosis.
- 1 in 3 seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another dementia. It kills more than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined
- Alzheimer’s has no cure. Currently there is one treatment – aducanumab (Aduhelm™) that can ‘reduce the decline’ of people living with early Alzheimer’s symptoms. This is the first therapy that “removes” amyloid plaque from the brain. There are other treatments that can temporarily slow the worsening of dementia symptoms and improve quality of life for those with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers.
The Annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s is world-wide
and raises funds with the hopes
of finding better treatments, delaying its onset and
preventing Alzheimer’s from developing.
Help And Support Are Available
- If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or another dementia, you are not alone.
- The Alzheimer’s Association is the trusted resource for reliable information, education, referral and support to millions of people affected by the disease.
Go To: Alzheimer’s Association
Call their 24/7 Helpline: 800.272.3900
Explore their Virtual Library
** We’d love to give a Special Mahalo to the Alzheimer’s Association for the wealth of information and resources on their site.
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