Dementia is age-related cognitive decline that is severe enough to interfere with daily life. It is typically a progressive problem, meaning that it starts out mild but becomes more pronounced as time goes on. "Dementia" is not itself a disease, but rather a generic term that encompasses a wide range of symptoms and underlying causes. Dementia affects roughly 10% of persons over the age of 65 in the US, and around 50% of those over the age of 85, with more than 3 million new cases being diagnosed each year.
Those with dementia commonly have memory issues, and may be prone to misplacing objects, getting lost, and becoming confused or disoriented. They may also have difficulties planning ahead, keeping appointments, and problem solving. There is a behavioral component to the syndrome as well, with dementia patients often exhibiting personality changes, depression, anxiety, paranoia, grumpiness, and other odd behaviors. Some may even hallucinate.
While the specifics vary based on the form of dementia, the underlying cause in call cases is damage to - or interference with - neurons. The location and severity of the damage determines what kind of symptoms manifest. The source of the damage varies between the different forms of dementia, though many have a genetic component (meaning that they run in families), and it is nearly always age-related as well.
Unfortunately, there is no true cure for dementia. For now, the best that anyone can do is to slow its progression and alleviate the symptoms associated with it. In this book you will find 24 alternative treatment options for dementia, many of which can be combined with medications or with one another for added benefit.