What Is Cat Dementia
Cat dementia, also known as feline cognitive dysfunction, is a brain disorder typically associated with old age in cats. Like other organs, the brain starts to deteriorate with age which leads to a decline in cognitive abilities. Just as humans with Alzheimers disease may forget their loved ones names, a cat with dementia may forget their normal routine, or become disoriented, confused and afraid more easily. This can be very sad to witness, but understanding the symptoms and treatment options can help you to and your cat better adjust to your new situation.
Cat dementia occurs when deterioration of the brain tissue, caused by aging and other factors, causes changes in the cats behavior, memory, and awareness.
One great way to keep your feline friend safe is to get a GPS cat tracker that lets you see where they are at all times. This can be life-saving, for example, in case they cant remember how to find their way back home.
What Are The Risk Factors For Dementia
If you, or someone you know, has developed dementia, it is natural to ask why. It is not usually possible to say for certain, although a doctor may be able to say which factor might have contributed. In most cases a mixture of risk factors potentially avoidable and not will be responsible.
Find out more about risk factors for dementia
Use our interactive tool to understand risk factors, and read more about the research evidence behind the newspaper headlines.
What Is Younger Onset Dementia
Younger onset dementia is used to describe any form of dementia that develops in people under the age of 65. Dementia has been diagnosed in people in their 50s, 40s and even in their 30s. It is sometimes called early onset dementia.
Younger onset dementia is similar to other types of dementia in many ways. The same problems generally occur, but the disease can have a different impact on a younger person because they are more likely to be employed full time, raising a family or financially responsible for a family.
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Facts About The Future
Studies into the main types of dementia have revealed the following about life expectancy
General life expectancy for someone with Alzheimers is around 8-12 years from diagnosis although this does depend on age and health. If you were relatively fit and healthy on the diagnosis you could live considerably longer than this. People who are diagnosed around the age of 65 tend to decline more slowly than those who are aged 80 or over. But with the right care and treatment, a fit and healthy 80 year old could still live into their nineties.
Did you know? A US study of 1,300 men and women with Alzheimers showed life expectancy to range from one year to 26 years from when their symptoms first appeared
Since vascular dementia is often linked to strokes people who are living with it can be in poorer general health than those with other types of dementia. Studies have shown their average life expectancy to be around four years after diagnosis, though their eventual decline is often linked to further strokes.
Dementia with Lewy bodies
After diagnosis, the average lifespan of someone with dementia with Lewy bodies was found in one study to be around 5-7 years after onset. However people have been known to live between two and 20 years with it, depending on their age, and other medical conditions they may have, such as Parkinsons disease which can be related to dementia with Lewy bodies.
How Accurate Is It
This quiz is NOT a diagnostic tool. Mental health disorders can only be diagnosed by licensed healthcare professionals.
Psycom believes assessments can be a valuable first step toward getting treatment. All too often people stop short of seeking help out of fear their concerns arent legitimate or severe enough to warrant professional intervention.
If you think you or someone you care about may be suffering from dementia or any other mental health condition, PsyCom.net strongly recommends that you seek help from a mental health professional in order to receive a proper diagnosis and support. For those in crisis, we have compiled a list of resources where you may be able to find additional help at: https://www.psycom.net/get-help-mental-health.
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What Diagnosis Falls Under Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimers disease is a diagnosis in itself. When it is noticeable clinically and identified early on, the formal diagnosis may be Mild Cognitive Impairment due to Alzheimers disease which may later develop into a diagnosis of dementia due to Alzheimers disease.
Difficulty Finding The Right Words
Another early symptom of dementia is struggling to communicate thoughts. A person with dementia may have difficulty explaining something or finding the right words to express themselves. Having a conversation with a person who has dementia can be difficult, and it may take longer than usual to conclude.
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The Truth About Aging And Dementia
As we age, our brains change, but Alzheimers disease and related dementias are not an inevitable part of aging. In fact, up to 40% of dementia cases may be prevented or delayed. It helps to understand whats normal and whats not when it comes to brain health.
Normal brain aging may mean slower processing speeds and more trouble multitasking, but routine memory, skills, and knowledge are stable and may even improve with age. Its normal to occasionally forget recent events such as where you put your keys or the name of the person you just met.
In the United States, 6.2 million people age 65 and older have Alzheimers disease, the most common type of dementia. People with dementia have symptoms of cognitive decline that interfere with daily lifeincluding disruptions in language, memory, attention, recognition, problem solving, and decision-making. Signs to watch for include:
Alzheimer’s disease or related dementias are not an inevitable part of aging. There are 7 ways to help maintain your brain health.
- Not being able to complete tasks without help.
- Trouble naming items or close family members.
- Forgetting the function of items.
- Repeating questions.
- Taking much longer to complete normal tasks.
- Misplacing items often.
- Being unable to retrace steps and getting lost.
If you have one or more of the 10 warning signs, please see your health care provider. Early diagnosis gives you the best chance to seek treatment and time to plan for the future.
Heres what you can do:
It Does Not Have To Be Water
Water is ideal, but not everyone will drink water. Flavored waters with no sugar added are OK. You can add a couple of drops of flavoring to the water. Drinks like iced tea and lemonade can be tricky. Drinks that have caffeine cause you to pee, which defeats the whole purpose of pushing liquids. Drinks with a lot of sugar are not goodempty calories.
If the person has diabetes, sugary drinks will make them pee more. And will cause dehydration. This is because the level of sugar in the blood is already high. Once a certain level of sugar is reached, the kidney tries to help by pushing the sugar out of the body. The kidney dilutes the sugar with fluid. The pee looks very pale and there is a lot of it. The vicious cycle begins. The person feels thirsty, drinks more soda, and the kidney helps by pushing the sugar out of the body in the form of pee. Bad situation.
Is Soda Ever OK?
Sometimes. This is where you weigh the pros and cons. If my 85-year-old aunt will ONLY drink ginger ale and she does not have diabetes, Im not going to fight that fight. If she prefers orange soda, I may cheat by cutting her beloved Fanta with some seltzer water. Or lots of ice cubes, which will melt and dilute the soda.
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Signs Of Dying In The Elderly With Dementia
Dementia is a general term for a chronic or persistent decline in mental processes including memory loss, impaired reasoning, and personality changes. Alzheimers disease is the most common form of dementia, accounting for 60-80% of all cases of dementia. It is also the 6th leading cause of death in the United States, and over 5 million Americans are currently living with Alzheimers disease.
Alzheimers disease and most progressive dementias do not have a cure. While the disease inevitably worsens over time, that timeline can vary greatly from one patient to the next.
Caring for a loved one can be challenging and stressful, as the individuals personality changes and cognitive function declines. They may even stop recognizing their nearest and dearest friends and relatives. As dementia progresses, the individual will require more and more care. As a family caregiver, its important to be able to recognize the signs of dying in elderly with dementia. Hospice can help by offering care wherever the individual resides, providing physical, emotional and spiritual care to the patient and support their family.
The Link Between Traumatic Brain Injury And Dementia Risk
Traumatic brain injury , a risk factor in midlife, is often caused by injuries sustained from automobile, sports accidents and exposure to blasts among members of the military. Severe TBI is linked to abnormal tau proteins, a biomarker of Alzheimers. People aged 50 years or older with a history of TBI are at an increased risk of dementia compared to those without TBI.
Heres what you can do:To reduce risk of falls for older adults, doing balance exercises and maintaining muscle strength especially in the legs is crucial, Larson said. Lookout for items around your home which can cause a trip. And avoid walking on slick surface barefoot or with stockings.
Read more about past research on TBI and dementia among military veterans, and the different proteins involved in TBI.
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While Dementia Is Not Necessarily Preventable Scientists Now Understand Even More Clearly The Extent To Which Some Lifestyle Changes Can Significantly Lower Ones Odds Of Developing Dementia Here Are 12 Risk Factors That Could Potentially Delay Or Prevent 40 Percent Of Dementia Cases Worldwide
Researchers project the number of people living with dementia, a neurodegenerative syndrome which currently afflicts 50 million people worldwide, will more than triple by 2050, soaring to 152 million cases globally. But experts in a recent report say two in five dementia cases could potentially be delayed or prevented by certain lifestyle choices and government policies.
The report builds on the previous nine risk factors identified by the Lancet Commission on dementia prevention, intervention and care, and adds three additional risk factors air pollution, traumatic brain injury and excessive consumption of alcohol.
Eric Larson, an author of the study and senior investigator at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle, said just as people cant control their genetics, people in their 40s cant retroactively change their socioeconomic circumstances in early life but people of all ages can, to varying extents, make lifestyle choices like habitual exercising to improve their health.
In my own practice, Ive been telling patients it would be a good idea to exercise regularly, Larson said. When they found out that you could preserve your brain and reduce your risk of dementia, it was actually a powerful motivator for many people to become a regular exerciser.
Being Patient takes a closer look at how each risk factor is linked to dementia.
Conditions With Symptoms Similar To Dementia
Remember that many conditions have symptoms similar to dementia, so it is important not to assume that someone has dementia just because some of the above symptoms are present. Strokes, depression, excessive long-term alcohol consumption, infections, hormonal disorders, nutritional deficiencies and brain tumours can all cause dementia-like symptoms. Many of these conditions can be treated.
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Determining Whether A Person Has The Capacity To Give Informed Consent
The components of informed consent:
- The possession of competence: competence refers to the legal capacity to make decisions in a certain realm and may be legally defined or determined in court. This is usually but not always linked to cognitive capacity. For example, many people under the age of 18 may have the cognitive capacity to make medical decisions but are not considered legally competent to do so .
- Voluntariness: not having been forced to make a particular decision.
- The provision of information: clear and truthful information, covering among other things details of any potential risks, benefits and alternatives to participants.
- Enrollment: freely deciding to participate in the study on the understanding that the participant can withdraw at any time without having to justify his/her decision or suffering any negative repercussions.
The criteria for competence:
Part of the process of obtaining informed consent involves determining whether a person has the necessary competence. A persons cognitive status or score on an assessment of mental status cannot be taken as sufficient proof of their ability to give informed consent .
The assessment of competence involves paying attention to four main abilities:
If It Isnt Alzheimers What Could It Be
Many of us would be relieved to know our loved one isnt suffering from permanent dementia.
My Grandma Ruth had Alzheimers. She knew my son was born and then slowly over the next few years forgot him, then me, then mom and eventually even herself. It sucks. It is excruciating for loved ones to watch. So, please know that I am not belittling that experience. Alzheimers and dementia are rough, but they are not immediately life threatening.
If the delirium comes on within days there are numerous serious medical conditions that could be causing it. Chances are most of their brain function will come back, but it is urgent to get to the root cause.
When I tell people that a urinary tract infection can cause dementia-like symptoms in the elderly I get two responses
Most people do not know unless they have seen it in a loved one. So, now you know and hopefully arent worried about a loved one as you are reading this.
A few medical conditions that can cause temporary confusion and delirium:
- head injury
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What To Do If A Loved One Is Suspicious Of Having Dementia
- Discuss with loved one. Talk about seeing a medical provider about the observed changes soon. Talk about the issue of driving and always carrying an ID.
- Medical assessment. Be with a provider that you are comfortable with. Ask about the Medicare Annual Wellness exam.
- Family Meeting. Start planning, and gather documents like the Health Care Directive, Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care, Estate Plan.
What Is The Clock Test For Dementia
The clock test is a non-verbal screening tool that may be used as part of the assessment for dementia, Alzheimers, and other neurological problems. The clock test screens for cognitive impairment. The individual being screened is asked to draw a clock with the hour and minute hands pointing to a specific time. Research has shown that six potential errors in the clock testthe wrong time, no hands, missing numbers, number substitutions, repetition, and refusalcould be indicative of dementia.
Common Early Symptoms Of Dementia
Different types of dementia can affect people differently, and everyone will experience symptoms in their own way.
However, there are some common early symptoms that may appear some time before a diagnosis of dementia. These include:
- memory loss
- difficulty concentrating
- finding it hard to carry out familiar daily tasks, such as getting confused over the correct change when shopping
- struggling to follow a conversation or find the right word
- being confused about time and place
- mood changes
These symptoms are often mild and may get worse only very gradually. It’s often termed “mild cognitive impairment” as the symptoms are not severe enough to be diagnosed as dementia.
You might not notice these symptoms if you have them, and family and friends may not notice or take them seriously for some time. In some people, these symptoms will remain the same and not worsen. But some people with MCI will go on to develop dementia.
Dementia is not a natural part of ageing. This is why it’s important to talk to a GP sooner rather than later if you’re worried about memory problems or other symptoms.
Signs Your Dog May Be Getting Dementia
If you have a dog, you probably hate thinking about negative things, such as the signs your dog may be getting dementia. But part of being a good pet owner is acknowledging that our pets do get sick, and they do age. And the more we can learn about all of the above, the better we can take care of them.
Dog dementia, otherwise known as Canine Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome , is very similar to Alzheimer’s disease in humans. If your dog has it, they may start to show signs of confusion, anxiety, listlessness, and other neurological-based problems. But usually not until they’re older.
“Age of onset can vary greatly based on individual breed characteristics, however we commonly see signs of CCDS in dogs 11 years and older,” Dr. Emily Wilson, of Fuzzy Pet Health, tells Bustle. “Subtle initial clinical signs can be noted as early as seven years of age in some dogs.”
The good thing is, if you notice signs of dementia, there are ways to help your dog feel better and stave off worsening symptoms. “One of the best things is regular environmental enrichment and mental stimulation,” Dr. Wilson says. “This can include food puzzles or some simple low stress training to help engage their minds on a daily basis. Regular low-impact exercise is also really important and it will also help maintain a healthy weight as well as mental stimulation.” There are also special diets, natural supplements, and medications your vet can recommend, if need be.
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