How to Identify the Difference between Dementia and Alzheimer’s

Helpful Tips from Your Friends at Wesley Enhanced Living

Often, words that refer to similar events or topics are used interchangeably. For example, people across the country refer to carbonated beverages as soda or cola or pop. This can happen in the world of medicine too. People tend to use ‘Alzheimer’s’ in place of ‘dementia’ and vice versa. They are correct only half of the time. With November being National Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, now is the opportunity to learn more.

When you understand the differences in the terms, you can help your loved one who may have either condition. If you are a patient, you can be more in control of your own wellbeing. At Wesley Enhanced Living, we strive to offer our residents the best in physical, mental, and social care during these golden years of life. Our residents enjoy many opportunities to keep their minds and bodies sharp.

Distinguishing between Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

Dementia is an umbrella term for a range of symptoms. In reality, the term does not refer to a specific disease. Instead, it is a term used to describe a variety of common symptoms such as:

  • Impaired thinking skills
  • Memory decline
  • Problems communicating and speaking
  • Reduced ability to reason
  • Issues with visual perception

Some forms of dementia may be reversed, as in the case of drug interaction or vitamin deficiency. There are different forms of dementia which include:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Lewy body dementia
  • Frontotemporal dementia
  • Vascular dementia
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease
  • Huntington disease
  • Mixed dementia

Alzheimer’s disease is a specific type of dementia. This is the most common form of dementia that gets worse over time. In other words, it is irreversible. What causes Alzheimer’s is when specific proteins called plaques and fibers called tangles build up in the brain. They then block signals between your nerves and destroy the cells. 

As the disease progresses, it can become challenging to carry on a conversation or handle everyday tasks. While there is no cure, it is possible to take charge of your health and utilize treatments that may ease some of the symptoms or slow down their progression. 

Safeguard Your Health with Help from Wesley Enhanced Living

Empower yourself to keep your mind sharp and body fit. The staff at Wesley Enhanced Living enable our residents to live life to the fullest. We offer many different options and services to meet your specific needs, including independent living and personal care

Wesley Enhanced Living provides high-quality senior retirement communities for you or your loved ones.  Contact one of our Philadelphia area locations and find out why our seniors love where they live. Our staff is happy to discuss your elder’s needs or your own, give you a tour and inform you of our range of services.

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