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Understanding Dementia in Relation to Brain and Communication Disorders Essay

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Understanding Dementia in Relation to Brain and Communication Disorders
It is well known that the elderly population in our society is growing larger. With this increase comes the awareness and prevalence of common health issues of the elderly. Dementia is an illness that is commonly associated with the geriatric population. To understand dementia, one would need to learn its symptoms, its causes, and its various treatment options. This study specifically focuses on the relationship that dementia holds with brain and communication disorders.
Defining Dementia
Butcher, Mineka, and Hooley (2013) described dementia as a progressive disorder that displays a deterioration of functioning and has a gradual onset. There are many different disorders that are known to cause dementia. Butcher et al. (2013) stated some of the causes to be strokes, infectious diseases, dietary deficiencies, head trauma, and degenerative brain diseases. The most common, and notable cause of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease (Butcher et. al., 2013).
“As Alzheimer’s disease progresses, neuro-fibrillary tangles spread throughout the brain” (National Institutes of Health, 2012). Plaques and tangles are major features of Alzheimer’s disease, along with nerve cell communication issues within the brain. By the final stage, damage is widespread and brain tissue has shrunk significantly (National Institutes of Health, 2012).
Early Signs and Symptoms
As dementia of the Alzheimer’s type (DAT) is frequently the cause of dementia in the geriatric population common symptoms, treatments and the efficacy of the treatments will be discussed. Dementia of the Alzheimer’s type is a cognitive impairment, resulting in the inability to learn and retain new inform...


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Nursing Standard, 25(25), 40-47.
Lu, Der Fa,PhD., R.N., & Herr, Keela, PhD, RN,A.G.S.F., F.A.A.N. (2012). Pain in dementia:
Recognition and treatment. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 38(2), 8-13.
doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.3928/00989134-20120113-01
National Institutes of Health (December 2012). What is Alzheimer’s disease? Retrieved from
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Smith-Conway, E. R., Baker, R., Angwin, A. J., Pachana, N. A., Copland, D. A., Humphreys, M. S.… Chenery, H. J. (2012, May). Education strategies in dementia. (2012). Australian
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