The Range of causes of dementia
There are many diseases that result in dementia. The most common types of dementia are Alzheimer’s disease; vascular dementia; Pick’s disease; dementia with Lewy bodies (Fronto-Temporal); Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD); Huntington’s disease.
Alzheimer's disease is one of the most common causes of dementia. The term 'dementia' describes a set of symptoms, which can include memory loss, changes in mood and problems with communication and reasoning. These symptoms occur when certain diseases and conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease, damage the brain. Alzheimer's disease could be described as a physical disease affecting the brain. During the course of the disease, protein 'plaques' and 'tangles' develop in the structure of the brain, leading to the death of brain cells. People with Alzheimer's may also have a shortage of some important chemicals in their brain. These chemicals are involved with the transmission of messages within the brain.
Alzheimer's is a progressive disease, which means that gradually, over time, more parts of the brain are damaged. As this happens, the symptoms become more and more severe.
Vascular dementia is the second most common form of dementia after Alzheimer’s disease. It is caused by problems in the supply of blood to the brain.
Vascular dementia affects different people in different ways and the speed of the progression varies from person to person. The symptoms of vascular dementia may begin suddenly, for example after a stroke. Vascular dementia often follows a ‘stepped’ progression, with symptoms remaining at a constant level for a time and then suddenly deteriorating. Some symptoms may be similar to those of other types of dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease. However, people with vascular dementia may particularly experience:
• Problems with speed of thinking, concentration and communication
• Depression and anxiety accompanying the dementia
• Symptoms of stroke, such as...