What are some different types and causes of dementia?
-Pick’s disease, Parkinson’s and HIV/AIDS can produce dementia.
-About two-thirds of all cases are attributed to Alzheimer’s.
-Vascular dementia is one specific type and can occur in people who have had strokes, diabetes and high blood pressure, due to a lack of adequate oxygen and nutrients reaching the brain.
-An overabundance of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain, referred to as Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus, can also cause dementia.
-Once contracted by a person, Mad Cow Disease (or BSE) can mutate into a virus called Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (or CJD).
Other risk factors for dementia include:
-Taking certain medications for other conditions
-A history of alcohol abuse, chemotherapy, or eating disorders which resulted or results in a severe vitamin B1 deficiency.
-Huntington’s disease (a hereditary condition)
-Severe head trauma and brain tumors.
What kinds of treatment are available?
Often psychiatrists and other therapists provide part of the patient’s treatment. One approach is Behavior Modification. Under the guidance of a specialist, patients can practice various skills: for example, tasks can be broken up into steps to make daily activities easier. Caregivers may be given tips on how to keep the patient’s environment calm and safe.
If paranoia, delusions, or depression are experienced, psychiatric medications can be prescribed. Other drugs help slow down the process of cognitive impairment.
Ginkgo biloba is a natural substance recommended to those with dementia, because it increases blood flow to the brain.