Photo by Goerge Hodon. Public Domain Pictures.

Dementia a condition where a person becomes disassociated loses their memory is unable to think rationally. It describes the condition where someone is said to “take leave of their senses.” Dementia is rampant in today’s society, thanks to a proliferation of addictions, diseases, and conditions that affect the brain and the fact that 15.6% of the Canadian population is over the age of 65 – over six million people.

Is it Dementia? Know These Symptoms

The symptoms of dementia can vary greatly, but the signature symptom is memory loss. This can include forgetting familiar names, what day it is, or where they live. Most people with dementia seem to have more problems with their short-term memory rather than with their long-term memory.

Some individuals may also behave as if they are living in the past.They may forget how old they are. Behavior and their speech might become simplified, repetitive, or irrelevant. Confusion and irritability may set in. New surroundings or new people irritate sufferers who are also generally resistant to learning new ideas or skills.

Sudden changes in mood or behavior are also likely as it is not uncommon for a person with dementia to lose their normal inhibitions and do or say inappropriate or antisocial things. This can include inappropriate sexual behavior.

Many sufferers of dementia also become withdrawn or depressed. They may lose interest in the outside world or their own care, giving up interests and hobbies, paying little attention to their personal hygiene, or forgetting to wash or change their clothes. Every day simple tasks such as cooking a meal may become too much. For instance, they may prepare a meal and then forget to eat it.

Obsessive behaviors, a need to be ritualistic, and hallucinations are also a part of this disturbing condition. They may also believe that they are experienced things that never happened. 

Disturbed sleep patterns including insomnia, staying up for days, and nightmares are also common. As dementia progresses the symptoms may become even more severe

What Causes Dementia?

Dementia develops when cells in the parts of your brain involved with mental ability become damaged. Damage can be caused by disease and infections that affect the brain such as Alzheimer’s or meningitis. A brain tumor, stroke, or head injury can also cause dementia. Alzheimer’s disease, which is responsible for about 60% of all cases of dementia. The cause of Alzheimer’s disease is unknown; except for a very small percentage of cases that seem to occur in families that have a history of the disorder.

Dementia is also a symptom of vascular dementia that is caused by poor circulation of blood in the brain. The smalls blood vessels in the brain becoming narrowed or blocked. This is like having a series of small strokes in the brain.

Serious diseases such as Picks Disease, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, and Creutzfeld-Jakob disease cause other less common types of dementia. Syphilis or HIV/AIDS. The misuse of alcohol, illegal drugs, or prescription drugs can also cause dementia.

Self-Care is Key to Prevent Dementia

Most types of dementia cannot be cured. The exceptions are dementias that are related to vitamin or hormone deficiencies, the onset of menopause or dementia caused by blunt brain damage or a tumor can be treated with surgery.

Support and care is the most important part of treatment for dementia. Many people with dementia are cared for in the community, often by a relative or friend.

At the Pinewood Natural Health Care Centre, we focus on disease prevention, non-invasive health care andself-care. We also help with women’s health issues as well as obesity, allergies, chronic pain, and PMS. Our services include naturopathic testing, dietary counseling, homeopathy, herbal remedies, and intravenous infusion therapy. You can find out more about us on our website call our Toronto Office at (416)-656- 8100. We also have an office in Pickering, Ontario at (905)-427-0057. You can also email us at info@pinewoodhealth.ca and we would be happy to answer any question that you have about our holistic health services.

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