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Dementia in Elder Adults

Powerful Essays
Introduction

Dementia illness is the most feared and distressing disorder of later life. This essay will address the overview of dementia followed by the most common types of dementia. The essay will cover the nursing assessment and the interventions. One issue relating to activity of living will be indentified and it will also explore the care required in relation to this activity for an older patient / client suffering from dementia, as well as patient, carer advice.

Analysis of Dementia

Overview

The term dementia refers to a serious loss in memory and other intellectual abilities in a formerly unimpaired person, further than what might be expected from normal aging (Dhanani & Wilkins, 2008). The origin of the word dementia is from a latin word “demens” meaning insane or being out of one’s mind (Banerjee, 2011, p.2). According to Miller (2009, p. 263), dementia is a syndrome not a disease, that means it is a pattern of symptoms that can be caused by many different illnesses. There are approximately twenty four million people with dementia in the world, with an additional four and a half million newly identified every year (Ferri, Prince, Brayne, Brodaty, Fratiglioni, 2005, p. 2113).

Types of Dementia

The most common types of dementia are the primary dementias; which occur as a result of pathological conditions of the brain. Primary dementias include Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementias, vascular dementia and dementia with Lewy bodies (Saxon, Etten & Perkins, 2010, p. 92).

Alzheimer’s disease is one of the diseases with the longest history of recognition. Alzheimer’s disease and dementia are often used interchangeably (Miller, 2009, p. 263). Saxon, Etten & Perkins (2010, p. 93), claim that, “Alzheimer’s dis...

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Retrieved April 7, 2011, from http://www.helpguide.org/elder/vascular_dementia.htm.
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