Ailments & Remedies

Ailments List

Dementia

 

Overview

A serious cognitive disorder, Dementia affects the older population due to brain degeneration. The brain functions that are affected are portions of memory, problem solving, attention and language. In most cases, dementia is progressive and incurable. It is also known to accompany Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease and a variety of other diseases.

 

Causes

Dementia is not a specific disease but a descriptive term for a collection of symptoms that can be caused by a number of disorders that affect the brain. It is caused by death of nerve cells and/or loss of communication among these cells. All types of dementia are characterised by abnormal structures called inclusions in the brain which contain abnormal proteins. These are common in people with dementia and researchers suspect that they play a part in the role of development of dementia. It can also be caused by a complex interaction of genes, lifestyle factors and other environmental influences. Reactions to medicines, metabolic problems, endocrine abnormalities, nutritional deficiencies (like lack of vitamins B1 and B6), brain infections like meningitis, encephalitis, etc., are other possible causes. Poisoning such as exposure to lead, substance abuse, brain tumours, heart and lung problems which may not carry enough oxygen to the brain may perhaps be other causes of dementia.

 

Symptoms

People with dementia have significant, impaired intellectual functioning that interferes with normal activities and relationships. They lose their ability to solve problems and maintain emotional control. Memory loss can be a common symptom. Doctors diagnose dementia if two or more functions of the brain are significantly impaired (memory, language skills, perception, cognitive skills, reasoning and judgment). There are various kinds of dementia with each having its unique symptoms.

 

Diagnosis

The doctor makes a note of the patient’s history regarding the overall condition, evaluation of emotional state, age factor and when the symptoms started. A physical examination by the doctor may also be done to rule out heart problems. Neurological evaluation may be conducted and tests may be recommended to check all the body functions. A psychiatric evaluation will also generally be done in these cases.

 

Treatment

Medications to some extent prescribed by a doctor can slow the progress and treat some symptoms of dementia. Other alternative therapies like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy may be beneficial in bringing about a positive change in the person. Various other complementary and alternative therapies can help improve the symptoms and treat the condition. Advice should be sought from a qualified practitioner for treatment options.



Common Remedies

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