Dementia refers to a group of neurological conditions that affect brain function and memory. The symptoms of dementia depend on the specific type. Types include Alzheimer’s disease, Lewy body dementia, and vascular dementia.
Dignity Health neurologists can diagnose and manage all stages of dementia in the Bay Area. For the expertise you deserve, Find a Doctor.
Signs of Dementia
In the early stages of dementia, symptoms may be mild and not that noticeable. As it progresses, these signs may become more pronounced. Certain types of dementia occur very quickly, while others take years to develop.
The signs and symptoms of dementia vary, but generally include:
- Difficulty with problem solving
- Gradual and progressive memory loss
- Poor reasoning and logic skills
- Problems with activities of everyday life
If you suspect one or more of these symptoms, meet with an experienced Dignity Health doctor for a diagnosis and personal care.
Causes & Risk Factors for Dementia
The causes of dementia depend on the type.
- Alzheimer’s disease is caused by a buildup of tau protein and other abnormal structures in the brain. The main factor for Alzheimer’s disease is family history (heredity).
- Lewy body dementia results from the buildup of specific brain proteins into masses called Lewy bodies. Risk factors include family history and Parkinson’s disease.
- Vascular dementia is caused by a disruption in blood flow to brain tissue and poor circulation. Risk factors include high blood pressure, smoking, and coronary artery disease.
The National Institute on Aging and the Alzheimer’s Association list the following as general risk factors for dementia:
Exploring Your Treatment Options at Dignity Health
Treatments for dementia focus on minimizing symptoms, preserving brain function, and improving quality of life. Dignity Health doctors may recommend medications to increase cognitive functions or stabilize mood. As the disease progresses, home care, such as bathing, dressing, and feeding, may be necessary.
Talk with your doctor about ways to prevent dementia.
Dignity Health hospitals in the Bay Area offer compassionate care to treat and manage all types of dementia.