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What’s the difference between Alzheimer’s and Dementia?

There is often confusion and misunderstanding surrounding the terms Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Though the two are certainly related there are significant differences that people should know.

Main differences between Alzheimer’s disease and dementia

  • Dementia is a syndrome while Alzheimer’s is a diseasethat causes dementia symptoms akin to HIV vs AIDS. You may also hear dementia described as a condition.

  • Alzheimer’s disease is the best known of these diseases and the most common cause of dementia. There are, however, over 200 types of dementia besides Alzheimer’s.

What is dementia

Dementia represents “a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life,” according to the American non-profit Alzheimer’s Association. A wide set of symptoms can apply, but there are certain smoking guns, like poor judgment or memory loss. Simplifying things, a disease like Alzheimer’s damages the brain and too much damage will impair its ability to function. This translates to observable symptoms that tend to develop hand in hand as the physiological damage worsens in the brain. It’s this set of symptoms that we refer to as “dementia.”

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written by TIBI PUIU for

(Credit: Pixabay)

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