There are a variety of diseases that can eventually cause dementia. Keep in mind that dementia is not itself a disease but rather a grouping of symptoms that affect a person’s thinking, reasoning, and memory, such as problems with common movements or changes in personality and behavior. These changes can lead to a difficulty with daily tasks and activities and might eventually make a lot of those tasks impossible for various reasons.
There are several different causes for dementia. The most common conditions to cause dementia are known as degenerative neurological diseases. These would include Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and Huntington’s disease, as well as some types of multiple sclerosis. These forms of dementia are irreversible, but there are various types of medication that doctors will prescribe to slow down or control the progression and intensity of symptoms.
Other causes for dementia would include depression, side effects of medication, vitamin deficiencies, or alcohol abuse. While the physical damage that comes from these causes would be permanent, it is possible to reverse this type of dementia.
Symptoms show up differently in each person. One factor in the variety of symptoms that show up at first comes from the cause of the dementia. Symptoms of dementia include memory loss, difficulty with communication, impairment in language, difficulty with common reasoning and judgment, and a hard time focusing and paying attention.
There isn’t one test that can determine whether or not someone has dementia. Instead, a doctor needs to do a careful study of medical history and changes in behavior or the body. One symptom by itself does not necessarily indicate dementia. The most important thing to think about is seeking medical attention if you notice a combination of these symptoms in yourself or a loved one. This will be the only way to determine if these symptoms truly pertain to dementia or if there is something else going on.