Unit 13. Dementia awareness

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Unit 13. Dementia Awareness

Explain what is meant by the term 'Dementia'.

Dementia, meaning “deprived of mind” is a serious cognitive disorder, It is the result of a unique global brain injury or progressive disease, resulting in long-term damage or disease in the body beyond what might be expected from normal ageing. It is a common condition. In England alone there are currently  570,000 people living with dementia.

Although dementia is far more common in the elderly, it can happen in any stage of adulthood.

The decline is the result of damage caused to the brain by specific brain diseases, or by a trauma within the brain such as a stroke. Memory loss is the most common feature of dementia, and it is the memory of recent events that is affected first. Disorientation and confusion regarding time, place and direction. A person with dementia may not be aware of the time, date or day, they can be lost in familiar places such as their own home or street. Difficulties in performing familiar tasks such as the steps involved in getting dressed can be lost. Verbal communication can also become difficult, as a person with dementia may frequently forget simple words or substitute inappropriate words in their place. Difficulties with perception, abstract thinking, judgement and changes in behaviour are all experienced by a person with dementia.

Describe the key functions of the brain that are affected by dementia.

Temporal lobe is responsible for vision, memory, language, hearing, and learning.

Frontal lobe is responsible for decision making, problem solving, control behaviour and emotions.

Parietal lobe is responsible for sensory information from the body, also where letters are formed, putting things in order and spatial awareness.

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Occipital lobe is responsible for processing information related to vision.

Cerebrum lobe is the biggest part of the brain, its role is memory, attention, thought, and our consciousness, senses and movement.

Hippocampus is responsible for memory forming, organizing, storing and emotions.

1. Explain why depression, delirium and age related memory impairment may be mistaken for dementia.

Depression can cause a person to be unable to retain any new information, they can become aggressive or withdrawn, as does a person with Alzheimer's, but with antidepressants and time they may be able to use their recall in time. Delirium can look ...

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