The word “dementia” refers to a group of brain diseases that interfere with a senior’s daily life, causing them to have issues with memories, and have trouble reasoning. Perhaps the most well-known type of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease. However, it’s important to know there are different kinds of dementia, each with its own symptoms and causes. This blog will explore some of the most common types of dementia, including their unique traits and possible risk factors for loved ones and companion care at home aides to know.
The most common type of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease, which accounts for about 60–70% of all dementia cases. It usually starts with memory loss and gets worse over time, making it harder to think, speak, and do everyday things. Amyloid plaques and tau tangles are two examples of abnormal protein deposits that build up in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s. The exact reason for Alzheimer’s is still unknown.
The second most common type of dementia is vascular dementia. It is caused by less blood flow to the brain, which can happen after a stroke or other vascular trouble. The signs of vascular dementia can be different based on where in the brain the damage is and how bad it is. Problems with planning, making decisions, and staying organized are common signs. Some things that can make seniors more likely to get vascular dementia are high blood pressure, diabetes, and smoking. The companion care at home team can encourage healthy lifestyle choices to help lessen the risk.
Lewy Body Dementia
Lewy bodies, which are abnormal protein clumps, are found in the brains of people with Lewy body dementia (LBD). Some of the signs of this type of dementia are the same as those of Parkinson’s disease. For example, seniors may tremor or become stiff. People with LBD often have changes in their cognitive skills, vivid hallucinations, and trouble sleeping. Because its signs overlap with those of other dementias, it can be hard to make a correct diagnosis.
The frontal and temporal lobes of the brain are mostly affected by frontotemporal dementia. This can change seniors’ attitudes and behaviors, as well as cause language problems. People with FTD usually get it between the ages of 40 and 65, causing them to need assistance like companion care at home sooner rather than later. No one knows for sure what causes FTD, but it is thought that in some cases, it is linked to changes in the genes.
As the name suggests, mixed dementia is when someone shows signs of more than one kind of dementia at the same time. Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia are most often found together. Mixed dementia can be harder to diagnose and treat because the symptoms are complicated and come from a number of different reasons.
Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease is a rare form of dementia that gets worse very quickly. It is caused by prions, which are abnormal proteins. It causes serious nerve problems like stiff muscles, twitching, and loss of mental abilities. Unfortunately, there is no cure for CJD, and it is fatal.
It’s important to know about the different kinds of dementia so that seniors with dementia, their loved ones, and the companion care at home team can give them the appropriate care and support they need. There is currently no cure for most types of dementia. Ongoing research continues to give people hope for better treatments and maybe even ways to avoid getting dementia in the future.