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Difference Between Alzheimers And Dementia

Updated on April 10, 2012


The difference between Alzheimer's and Dementia are:

Alzheimer's is a brain Disease that causes problemes with memory,thinking and behavior. Symptoms develope usually slowly and worsen over time which will interfere with daily task . Alzheimer's is the most common form of Dementia.

Alzheimer's is not a normal part of aging although the known risk factor is increasing age, the majority of people with Alzheimer's are the age of 65 or older. Alzheimer's isn't just a disease of old age. Individuals with the disease have an early onset which appears in there 40's and 50's.

Alzheimer's ia a progressive disease and there are stages of the disease. Early stages of Alzheimer's is a mild loss of memory and as it progresses into the late stages individuals lose the ability to carry a conversation and become more forgetful.

Alzheimers Disease is commonly equated with the term Dementia, However there are many causes of Dementia. Distinguishing Alzheimers from other causes of Dementia is not always easy and straight forward as defining these terms. In order for an individual to be diagnosed properly they need to see a physician due to the Disease causing microscopic brain abnormalities that we can't see.

There is no current cure for Alzheimer's but there are treatments for the symptoms of the disease. The lifespan of an individual that has been just diagnosed with Alzheimer's is usually from 3 to 20 years from the time the symptoms became noticeable to others.


Dementia is an impairment of thinking and memory that interferes with a persons ability to do things which he or she previously was able to do. Most types of dementia are non-reversible, Which means changes in the brain that are causing the Dementia can't be stopped or turned back. Alzheimer's is the most common type of Dementia.

Lewy body disease is a leading cause of Dementia in elderly adults. People with this condition have abnormal protein structures in certain areas of the brain. Dementia can be caused do to many small strokes. This is called vascular Dementia. Causes of dementia may be stopped or reversed if found soon enough like brain tumors, low vitamin B12 levels,changes in blood sugar, sodium and calcium levels, certain medications, alcohol abuse.

Dementia usually occurs in older aged people, it's rarely seen in people under 60. Dementia symptoms include difficulty of mental function such as language, perception, memory,emotional behavior or personality, judgement and thinking. Forgetfulness appears to be the first sign of Dementia. As Dementia becomes worse there symptoms worsen and people forget details of current events, forget who you are, they'll have difficulty reading,writing,eating,they will have agitation,delusions,and depression. They will withdraw from social contact. Dementia as well as Alzheimer's needs to be diagnosed by a physician.

If you feel a loved one has shown signs of Alzheimer's or Dementia please contact 1-800-272-3900 for more help.


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    • smeyerz profile image

      smeyerz 5 years ago

      Found this hub to be very informative, before I was one of those people who confused them for the same thing!

    • GlstngRosePetals profile image

      GlstngRosePetals 6 years ago from Wouldn't You Like To Know

      leni sands: Ya the one's we love with alzheimers tend to misplace things and sometimes in a residential situation tend to blame one person that lives there with them. I'm sorry that your father in law has this disease but one day he will remember and say something to you and then he will go back to forgetting. If he had a great childhood and that's where his memory is then it definetly is a nice place. Thankyou for your comment.

    • leni sands profile image

      Leni Sands 6 years ago from UK

      My father in law is 90, he also has Alzheimers and struggles to remember anything current, his childhood is pretty much in his mind now - he doesn't know who any of us are or why he is in 'his house' (the one he lived in as a boy). Where ever he is in his mind it seems to be a nice place, although someone keeps stealing everything he misplaces...Great hub, very useful.

    • GlstngRosePetals profile image

      GlstngRosePetals 7 years ago from Wouldn't You Like To Know

      jdavis88: I agree it is a very sad disease especially for the families that have to see there loved one go through it. I thank you for your comment.

    • GlstngRosePetals profile image

      GlstngRosePetals 7 years ago from Wouldn't You Like To Know

      The Suburban Poet: Your welcome and I'm glad that you and your father were able to talk to each other and share that special moment together. I know things in the future will get harder and it's going to be very emotional road for you but stay strong and remember it's the disease when things start to become tough and that it's not your dad's fault so when his memory starts slipping don't take it to heart just be by his side.

    • jdavis88 profile image

      Joseph Davis 7 years ago from Florida

      Very sad disease. Informative hub!

    • The Suburban Poet profile image

      Mark Lecuona 7 years ago from Austin, Texas

      My father has Alzheimers. He is 82 and is struggling but we just had a great conversation about politics and he was able to keep up and was able to reference comments from an hour earlier which cheered me to no end... Thank you for this hub...