Delirium And Dementia And Depression And Powerpoint Lecture

By: Thulas Sukati


No-one has a perfect memory and almost all of us forget things from time to time but the case of dementia is not normal nor is it just a case of forgetfulness. Dementia is not just about memory though as it affects many different mental functions that stops us from functioning properly.

Being a slow developing condition sometimes it is difficult to spot because memory loss is normal as we age and to make matters worse dementia is a collection of symptom caused as a result of many different illnesses or reactions to medication used to treat illnesses. However, while dementia cannot be cured, there are many instances where, when caught early on, it can be treated with varying degrees of success and often although dementia may seem to be present, it can actually be a case of the person being depressed. In cases where a person is suffering from depression, dementia like symptoms can be present leading to a false diagnosis but in others it is just a matter of treating the cause of the condition.

Examples of this include dementia caused by drugs or alcohol, or hormone or vitamin imbalances but because some causes of dementia can be cured or partially treated, it is very important that your doctor is thorough when making the diagnosis. According to the National Institute on Aging, there are at least one hundred different types of conditions that may result in short-term dementia, many of which can be treated and about ten percent of all cases of dementia may be treatable.

Normally dementia is placed into two categories; those that are chronic and those that are reversible where in these incidents the short-term dementia is as result of another unrelated condition. Unfortunately, many changes happen as you get older, anything from early or forced retirement, family death or even moving house. Any of these can cause depression, anxiety, and can damage physical and mental health so make sure your physician is informed of these stresses in your life.

The elderly also suffer from many other conditions which tend to affect us more as we age and can affect many things we take for granted like a good night's sleep, healthy appetite, mental attitude and even our general happiness. Of course, medical conditions like hypoglycemia, liver and kidney problems, electrolyte imbalances and hypocalcaemia can all create problems that affect sleep, appetite and cause confusion. Some older citizens do not realize their vision or hearing is deteriorating as it is happening over a protracted period of time and this can lead to confusion about where they are and especially when someone is talking to them so regular eye and hearing checks can make a big difference.

It is a common complaint amongst the elderly that they no longer enjoy their food which can be due to ill fitting dentures or a loss of taste and as a consequence they do not receive adequate nutrition. Along with this, any other form of dementia which includes Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease, to name a couple, must also be considered.

Medical scans can help with the diagnosis of course and then with the treatment program and the type of dementia exhibited, be it reversible or chronic. The main difference when it is a case of irreversible dementia is the need for adjustments to be made where the person lives to avoid situations that are dangerous but continuous training in behavior methods should also be carried out.

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