Last Updated Date: February 11, 2022

What’s the Difference Between Dementia and Alzheimer?

Alzheimer and dementia diseases seen in elderly individuals seem to have the same meaning in daily life, but in different ways.

What’s the Difference Between Dementia and Alzheimer?

Dementia and Alzheimer diseases seen in elderly individuals can be used as if they mean the same thing in daily life. However, there is a difference between them. Knowing whether the symptoms that occur in yourself or a loved one is Alzheimer’s or dementia is very important for correct communication and treatment.

Symptoms are stronger

According to the World Health Organization data, on average 65 percent of people with dementia have Alzheimer’s disease. The remaining 35 percent who are diagnosed with dementia have different types, such as vascular dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies, frontotemporal dementia, traumatic dementia, infectious disease-related dementia, and even alcohol-induced dementia.

Each of these types has different characteristics, symptoms, and pace of progression. Alzheimer’s tends to affect learning ability and memory more than other types of dementia in the early stages. So it’s more likely to cause forgetfulness and affect the ability to speak.

In the brain of a person with Alzheimer’s disease, deposits of protein fragments called plaques are found between nerve cells. Although the exact contribution of these plaques to Alzheimer’s disease is not known, it is thought that they disrupt communication between nerve cells and interfere with normal cell processes.

As the disease progresses and more parts of the brain are affected, changes in behavior, confusion, delusions, and difficulty speaking or walking can occur. Other types of dementia may progress differently depending on which parts of the brain are affected.

Differences Between Dementia and Alzheimer

Diagnosing the type of dementia isn’t always easy because some people don’t have full-blown dementia. This condition is also called mild cognitive impairment. People with dementia need others to manage certain activities and tasks. People diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment can do most tasks on their own, although they may need some direction.

Getting lost in a familiar environment, forgetting the plans made or skipping a regular activity are among the most obvious symptoms of dementia. If these kinds of events have started to happen to you frequently, the first thing you should do is see a doctor. Monitoring symptoms and progression at an early stage gives more information about the type of dementia and increases the chances of cure.

While some drugs work in the mild cognitive impairment stage, they do not show any effect in the later stages. If you have a family history of dementia, this does not mean that it will happen to you. Genetic factors increase the risk, but there are things you can do to reduce it. Be physically, cognitively and socially active. Also reduce cardiovascular risk factors. Among the known risk factors for dementia are diseases such as obesity, hypertension and diabetes.

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