Dementia refers to a group of symptoms that affect everyday life functioning. These symptoms include personality change, difficulties with speech, memory loss and a lot more.
In the olden days, dementia was always associated with old age, but the belief changed in 1901 when a German called Alois Alzheimer diagnosed the disease in a fifty-year-old woman. Aging is a physiological process while dementia is a pathology of the brain.
[bctt tweet=”Dementia is not only associated with old age, be aware!”]
People suffering from dementia have difficulties with speech, execution of movement and memory loss. Early symptoms are not always obvious because they vary from person to person. This is why we sometimes mistakenly see the symptoms of dementia as a part of aging. An example is when one misplaces things around the house such as forgetting that you left your mobile phone inside your handbag and you start searching for it, this is very normal. But when you start putting things in odd places such as leaving your mobile phone inside the microwave, this has gone beyond the aging process.
[bctt tweet=”The signs of dementia we should look out for are difficulties with speech, execution of movement and memory loss.”]
There are different types of dementia:
- There is the vascular dementia which causes difficulty with reasoning and it is also characterized by memory loss.
- There is also the lewy body dementia which is one of the most common types of dementia and it is very difficult to diagnose. People suffering from this type of dementia hallucinate, have problems with sleeping and sometimes get depressed.
Studies have shown that around the world the number of people living with dementia is currently estimated to be about fifty million people. But in Nigeria there is no data on the number of people living with dementia because of our culture and lack of awareness of what dementia is. I am not even sure if it can be managed by our hospitals.
[bctt tweet=”A healthy lifestyle, diet and doing activities to challenge our brains can help reduce susceptibility to dementia.”]
It is not certain if there is any drug that can completely and permanently reverse the effects of dementia. But a healthy lifestyle, diet and doing activities to challenge our brains can help reduce susceptibility to dementia.
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