Dr. Parth Bansal

Dr.Parth Bansal

Are you suffering from memory problems, it can be due to these causes

Dementia is a term used to describe a group of symptoms affecting memory, thinking and social abilities

What are the symptoms of dementia?

Cognitive changes

  • Experiencing memory loss, poor judgment, and confusion
  • Difficulty speaking, understanding and expressing thoughts, or reading and writing
  • Trouble handling money responsibly and paying bills
  • Taking longer to complete normal daily tasks
  • Losing interest in normal daily activities or events
  • Wandering and getting lost in a familiar neighbourhood
  • Not caring about other people’s feelings
  • Losing balance and problems with movement
  • Repeating questions
  • Using unusual words to refer to familiar objects
  • Hallucinating or experiencing delusions or paranoia
  • Acting impulsively

Psychological changes

  • Personality changes.
  • Depression.
  • Anxiety.
  • Agitation.
  • Inappropriate behaviour.
  • Being suspicious, known as paranoia.
  • Seeing things that aren’t there, known as hallucinations.

What are the causes of Dementia?

The most common causes of dementia include:

Degenerative neurological diseases. These include:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Some types of multiple sclerosis.

These diseases get worse over time.

Vascular disorders. These conditions affect the blood circulation in your brain.

  • Traumatic brain injuries caused by car accidents, falls, concussions, etc.
  • Long-time alcohol or drug use
  • Infections of the central nervous system. These include meningitis, HIV, and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.
  • Hydrocephalus, a buildup of fluid in the brain

Some reversible causes of dementia include:

  • Alcohol or substance use disorder
  • Metabolic disorders such as a vitamin B12 deficiency
  • Low levels of thyroid hormones, called hypothyroidism
  • Subdural hematomas, blood clots beneath the outer covering of the brain
  • Tumours
  • Normal-pressure hydrocephalus, a buildup of fluid in the brain
  • Low blood sugar, called hypoglycaemia
  • HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND)

What are the risk Factors for Dementia?

Certain physical and lifestyle factors can raise your chances of dementia, including:

  • Age
  • Depression
  • Dementia in your family
  • Strokes
  • Smoking, heavy alcohol use, poor diet, and lack of exercise
  • Illnesses including diabetes, Down syndrome, multiple sclerosis, heart disease, and sleep apnea
  • Brain injury
  • Infection of the brain (for example, meningitis and syphilis)

How can Dementia be diagnosed?

The doctor will review the patient’s history and perform a physical exam and cognitive testing. 

The following tests help in narrowing down the diagnosis:

  • Blood and urine tests
  • Chest X-ray
  • Brain scanning (MRI or CT scanning)
  • Electroencephalogram (EEG)
  • Spinal fluid analysis

How can Dementia be treatment?

Treatment depends on the condition causing dementia. Some people may require hospitalisation for a short time.

Treating conditions that can lead to confusion often greatly improve mental function. Such conditions include:

  • Anaemia
  • Decreased blood oxygen (hypoxia)
  • Depression
  • Heart failure
  • Infections
  • Nutritional disorders
  • Thyroid disorders

Medicines may be used to:

  • Slow the rate at which symptoms get worse, though improvement with these drugs may take time
  • Control problems with behaviour, such as loss of judgment or confusion

Someone with dementia will need support in the home as the disease gets worse. Family members or other caregivers can assist by helping the person cope with memory loss and behaviour and sleep problems.

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