What is the difference between dementia and Alzheimer's?
This is a question that we get asked on a regular basis. The fact that Dementia and Alzheimer’s are some what of a mystery doesn’t help the confusion and can explain why people often inter link the two.
According to the National Institute on Aging (NIA), Dementia is a brain disorder that affects communication and performance of daily activities whilst Alzheimer’s disease is a form of dementia that specifically affects parts of the brain that control thought, memory and language.
So put simply Alzheimer’s is one form of Dementia disease. There are many others that are less known but can have just as big an impact on peoples lives.
So let’s look at Dementia, as fore mentioned Dementia is the over arching term for the set of symptoms including impaired thinking and memory. In other words lets think of Dementia as someone with a sore back, they have back pain, but what is causing the pain, could it be they have a slipped disk, they have a herniated disk, problems with their posture or tight hamstrings? In this example the back pain is the Dementia and Alzheimer’s is the slipped disk or the poor posture.
Hence, someone who has Dementia is suffering from symptoms without been told what is causing them. The cause of the symptoms is the type of Dementia, and Alzheimer’s is one such cause.
There are over 100 different types of dementia but Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type accounting for over 60% of all cases and affecting more than half a million people in the UK.
Dementias can be classified in a variety of ways and are often grouped by what they have in common, such as what part of the brain is affected, or whether they worsen over time (progressive dementias).
Some, such as those caused by a reaction to medications or an infection, are reversible with treatment. Types of dementias that are not reversible and worsen over time include; Alzheimer’s, Vascular Dementia, Frontotemporal Dementia and Lewy Bodies Dementia, these forms of dementias are incurable at this time, however, the Government in 2012 has committed to doubling the investment into Dementia Research, and David Cameron has set out the Prime Minister’s challenge on dementia 2020, which sets out what this government wants to see in place by 2020 in order for Scotland and the rest of the UK to be:
- The best country in the world for dementia care and support and for people with dementia, their carers and families to live
- The best place in the world to undertake research into dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases
It also highlights the progress to date on improving dementia care, support and research. The local Alzheimer’s society is a charity we support.
Here at Bluebird Care Edinburgh we pride ourselves on supporting people living with Dementia in a sensitive, flexible and non-intrusive way, we work with families and Health Care Professionals to provide the best holistic solution whether that be; Personal Care, Social Outings, Respite or Live in Care.
The following Bluebird Care Edinburgh customer commented;
As I have gone to hell and back with Care companies in the past, it was refreshing to meet the Bluebird Care Team. I found them a great team; caring, compassionate, and understanding to my mine and my mother’s situation. My mother is 90 yrs old with Dementia and it is nice to see a smile on her face once more, this is all down to Bluebird Care. So all I can say is a big thank you to Bluebird Care for all that you are doing for my mother.
We ensure that are staff are appropriately training in helping and supporting these with Dementia, we also have Dementia Champions throughout the company who have worked in partnership with Stirling University – which are world renowned for their Dementia training.
How to find the right care for you or your relative
1. Find your local office
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2. Get in touch with us
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We’ll come out to you to find out what you or your loved one needs to help stay independent at home.
4. Care team chosen & care starts
You'll be cared for by our specially trained team to support you to remain at home for as long as possible.