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What is Dementia?

By Author 03-Aug-2021 3

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What is Dementia?

Dementia is an umbrella term, which is used to define a number of symptoms that include but are not limited to memory loss, loss of ability to think and remember, loss of problem-solving skills, etc. The problem of Dementia is caused when an individual brain is damaged by diseases such as Alzheimer’s or brain strokes. In the initial stage, it is difficult to spot the problem of dementia, and the person suffering from it can carry on with its day-to-day chores, but with the passage of time the brain tissue keeps on getting damaged, and with it occurs the progressive loss of the brainpower which results in performing in other ways a simpler task much problematic.

As per Canada’s Dementia report to parliament, there are more than 4,32,000 people who are above the age of 65 years who have been diagnosed with Dementia, out of these 4,32,000 patients 2,88,000 are women patients. The number of people suffering from Dementia is expected to increase in the near future and therefore there arises a need to bring awareness among the people relating to how to spot dementia in its early stage so that proper precaution and medication could be taken.

Types of Dementia?

 As already said Dementia is an umbrella term that is used to define a number of symptoms that are related to memory loss, or loss of the brainpower to do basic stuff such as problem-solving skills. There can be different types of Dementia such as

  • Dementia caused by Alzheimer’s disease – Around 62% of the known dementia cases is caused due to Alzheimer’s disease. In Alzheimer's, the brain cells and their connections are slowly and gradually destroyed which renders the person unable to perform basic memory tasks.
  • Vascular Dementia- Vascular Dementia is yet another common cause of dementia among people. It is caused due to the problem with the blood supply to the brain cells. Vascular dementia may occur from brain strokes damaging the blood-carrying veins.
  • Lewy body Dementia- The second most common cause of Dementia is Lewy body dementia often called Dementia with Lewy bodies. It is a type of progressive dementia the effect of which increases with the passage of time. In Lewy body dementia the person might suffer from visual hallucination and other symptoms which are mostly similar to Parkinson’s disease.   

Causes of Dementia?

Dementia is caused due to damage to the brain cells or when the blood-carrying veins are not able to supply blood properly to the brain cells.  This might happen due to brain strokes or abnormal protein deposits in the brain. Each person suffering from dementia is different depending on which part of the brain and how much of the brain is damaged. There are certain factors that caused dementia that can neither be changed nor be altered such as:

  • Family History: If Dementia run’s in your family it puts you at a higher risk of developing the problem. However this is not always true, there have been umpteen cases where the individuals have not developed Dementia even though it runs in their family.
  • Age: The risk of developing dementia increases with the age especially after 65, and there is practically nothing much you can do about it apart from giving support to the seniors and taking the medicines as prescribed by the doctors. However, this is not a normal process of aging, dementia might also occur in people in their 40’s.


Prevention from Dementia

There doesn’t exist a silver bullet to cure or prevent dementia from occurring but there are certain habits that you must include in your lifestyle that might help. These are as follows:

  • Keep your brain active
  • Quit smoking as soon as you can
  • Get good quality sleep
  • Take a healthy diet
  • Regular exercise
  • Quit harmful alcohol use
  • Get enough vitamins, especially vitamin D


Dementia affects every person differently, how they behave or how dementia affects them, depends upon which part of their brain is damaged. Dementia might also alter a person’s personality, so you might experience a person who has been energetic and active their entire life may become dull and lethargic or someone who has always been jovial and pleasant may become rude and aggressive, but the one thing which you should always remember is that “They may not be able to remember who you are but they will feel you just the same” (-Amanda Dillon)