The fact that Alzheimer’s disease and dementia is not the same illness is something you’ll discover, during the progression of your CNA training. In fact, like many people, you may be surprised to learn that dementia is the broad term used to describe various types and warning signs of memory loss ailments and Alzheimer’s is actually one of dementia’s most common causes.
Dementia typically affects the elderly. The same holds true for Alzheimer’s disease, with one exception. Early Onset Alzheimer’s is known to affect individuals as young as 40.
CNA Training Covers the Symptoms of Dementia
No two people exhibit the same symptoms of dementia. During the course of your career after CNA training, you’ll find that each case is different and must be treated accordingly. Some well-known symptoms include:
- difficulty performing everyday tasks
- higher than normal levels of nervousness and agitation
- problems thinking ahead or planning things
In regard to forgetfulness, it is important to note that not all memory loss is a sign of future dementia. Many people experience a small degree of forgetfulness as a normal part of aging. It is nothing to be overly concerned about.
CNA Training Covers the Causes of Dementia
There are many other causes of dementia, in addition to Alzheimer’s. They include, but are not limited to:
- brain lesions or strokes
- other conditions such as Pick’s, Parkinson’s or Huntington’s Disease
- infectious diseases
- and even prolonged vitamin deficiency
CNA Training Covers the Symptoms of Alzheimer’s
Like other types of dementia, the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease vary from person to person. One of the earliest signs is the inability to remember new information. This is because the disease typically affects the part of the brain that is responsible for learning. Other symptoms include:
- confusion about time and events
- heightened suspicions about friend and family members
- difficulty speaking or swallowing
In many cases, friends and family members are the first to notice these warning signs, due to the nature of the illness.
CNA Training Covers the Outcome of Alzheimer’s
Unfortunately, Alzheimer’s symptoms get worse over time and there currently is no cure. It is categorized as a progressive condition whereas dementia patients experience more gradual symptoms over a longer period of time.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, the average life expectancy of an individual suffering from the disease is 8 years. Nevertheless, life with Alzheimer’s generally ranges from 4 to twenty years. It all depends on the patient’s age at onset and any additional health conditions that he or she may have.
There are 7 stages of Alzheimer’s disease, as you will probably learn in your CNA training. They range from stage one when there are no apparent symptoms to stage seven, which is an indicator of severe decline.
Remember, even though Alzheimer’s disease and dementia is similar in nature, they are not the same thing. Each remains somewhat of a mystery. However, research is ongoing and reveals new information every day. Typically, part of your CNA training will cover this topic and help you differentiate between the two.
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