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Dementia In Older Adults Essay

2000 words - 8 pages

This assignment critically discusses about dementia, a widespread disability among older adults today. It provides an introduction to dementia and analyses its prevalence in society. The various forms of dementias are elaborated with description about dysfunctions and symptoms. Nursing Assessment and Interventions are provided in the further sections which discusses about actions nurses should take on while evaluating patients and treating them. Finally, communication, an important Activity of Daily Living (ADL) is explored and patient/carer advice is presented so as to maintain good health conditions in the patient.
Analysis of Dementia
According to (Miller, 2009), dementia is the most accurate expression which illustrates the development of cognitive impairment. ¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬It exemplifies the diverse brain anarchies which ultimately lead to severe brain dysfunction (Alzheimer Australia, 2011). Dementia is the leading cause of disability in older adults in Australia accounting for 17 percent of the cases (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2004). Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Vascular Dementia (VD), Frontotemporal Dementia (FD) and Dementia with Lewy Bodies (DLB) are the well known forms of this disease. This usually occurs in older adults aged above 65; however it is a disability and not a normal symptom of aging. Chances of inheritability are present but it depends on the individual and the type of dementia (Alzheimer Australia, 2011). The Global Deterioration Scale provides a detailed explanation regarding the seven stages of cognitive decline in Dementia (Alzheimer’s Association of Canada, 2005).

Types of Dementia
There are four main types of dementia with AD being the most widespread form. It accounts for almost two thirds (50 -70 percent) of the cases and thus more extensively studied (Miller, 2009). According to Kerr, (2007) AD is largely related to the degeneration of brain weight because plaques and neuro- fibre tangles form, causing inflammation, disrupting neuronal transmission and killing brain tissues. AD is a progressive disease which harms the temporal and parietal brain lobes. This causes memory loss, deterioration of visual spatial skill, complexity in communication, judgement and recognition which in long term, results in death of brain cells (Alzheimer’s Association, 2011).
VD is the second most common type of dementia; consisting of 10 to 30 percent and it is due to dead nerve cells in infected vessels. This is often caused by transient ischemic attacks (Miller, 2009). The two widely known forms of vascular dementia is Multi-infarct dementia (MD) and Binswanger’s disease (BD) also known as sub cortical vascular dementia. MD is a result of Transient Ischaemic Attacks (TIA) that harms the cortex of the brain which is involved with memory. BD is related to stroke and high blood pressure and affects the “white matter” in the brain causing movement difficulties and emotional imbalances (Alzheimer’s...

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