CogniFit's Science blog: A World Full Of Dementia

A World Full Of Dementia

Although sad to admit, there are countless forms of dementia that millions of people continue to struggle from day in and day out. The term itself is described as a collection of symptoms included decreased intellectual functioning that ultimately interferes with normal life functions.

Understanding the different forms can help you stay in touch with what may arise one day with you or a loved one.

Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s is one of the most common causes of dementia; especially with those over the age of 65. It is difficult to identify the exact cause behind the disease, but it has been related to amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. The most notable affects include memory, movement, language, judgment, behavior and abstract thinking.

Vascular
The second most common cause is Vascular dementia, which is caused by brain damage from cerebrovascular or cardiovascular problems like a stroke. Some symptoms to be aware of include personality and emotion changes, but these are typically affected late in the disease.

Lewy Body
This is a rather common form that is progressive over time. This entails the cells in the brain’s cortex dying while other times it contains abnormal structures. The symptoms often overlap those of Alzheimer’s, but can also include hallucinations, shuffling gait and flexed posture. It can be difficult to identify as the symptoms may vary daily.

Frontotemporal
The fourth kind to be aware of is Frontotemporal dementia, which can be linked to degeneration of nerve cells in the frontal and temporal brain lobes. There is evidence that it can be linked to genetic factors as well. This typically affects patients within the 40-65 year age range and can result in judgment and social behavior. Increased appetite and compulsive behavior are also common.

Huntington’s Disease
This is a heredity disorder that is caused by a faulty gene. Children of a person who has a disorder sadly have a 50% chance of getting this disease. Symptoms like anxiety and depression become apparent in the 30-40 year-old range and progress into psychotic behavior over time. Severe dementia and chorea can develop with the progression.

There are countless forms of dementia that wreak havoc on the lives of millions worldwide today. And while each is different in one way or another, they are all equally disturbing. Scientists, researchers and doctors are continuously seeking the best treatment options possible to ensure the varying forms of dementia do not permanently ruin the lives and mental health of helpless individuals.