There are about fifty million people globally who suffer from dementia, with around ten million new cases diagnosed annually. It’s estimated that one in nine seniors will be affected by Alzheimer’s, which is the most common form of dementia.
If your loved one has begun showing signs of memory loss, you might be concerned. However, it is not always easy to know when your loved one is showing normal signs of aging, or that you need to start considering dementia care.
Below, we go over the key differences between the normal aging process and dementia, so you are better equipped to handle your aging loved on in the Minneapolis area.
The Normal Aging Process
During the normal aging process, both the brain and the body naturally begin to slow down. A person’s intelligence, however, will remain mostly the same. What tends to be most affected during normal aging is a person’s ability to remember names of people or places.
People may recall how a parent or grandparent had difficulty bringing up the name of somewhere they needed to go in Minneapolis. They likely knew the place they were thinking of, but the name evaded them. A loved one may also have accidentally called you by the name of your sibling or cousin.
Dementia is different from the normal aging process; despite the fact both can result in memory loss. Dementia is actually a set of symptoms that revolve around mental deterioration. Symptoms can extend well beyond the simple forgetfulness seen with normal aging.
People with dementia may find it difficult to solve problems, writing, or even just speaking. They can forget people or places entirely, not just their names. They may also have problems understanding symbols or orienting themselves, and generally need special care.
Comparing the Two
People undergoing the normal aging process can usually care for themselves up to a point. Once they get more advanced in age, they may require someone to assist with some basic tasks. They may also choose to live in independent living or in a non-medical assisted living facility in the Minneapolis area.
People with dementia often deteriorate very quickly and have difficulty caring for themselves. They usually require special medical assistance and extended living assistance.
The normal aging process is slow and steady, whereas dementia progresses faster than expected. Normal aging causes occasional forgetfulness, whereas dementia can cause severe thinking-related problems.
Another key comparison is the way dementia can alter the mood. The normal aging process doesn’t typically cause a person to become angry or volatile, whereas dementia can. People with dementia can lash out or become aggressive at times.
More Questions About Normal Aging vs Dementia for Your Senior Loved One in Minneapolis?
Although both can include memory loss, normal aging and dementia are very different. People undergoing the normal aging process are usually able to care for themselves, whereas people with dementia generally need special care.
Do you have more questions about normal aging vs dementia? Do you want to inquire about assisted living services?
Contact us today. One of our associates would be happy to answer any questions you still have. They can also discuss assisted living or home care services with you if desired.