What is Young Dementia in plain English?
Young Dementia or Early On Set Dementia (EOSD) is thought of predominantly as an illness of the elderly, but unfortunately this is not the case, now we know you Spring Chickens never consider yourself old, but there are Young Spring Chicks suffering from Dementia too, 40,000 in the UK in fact.
Early on set dementia hits predominantly between 45-65 year olds and like we have seen with the rest of the Dementia Umbrella, can pronounce itself in a variety of ways.
Starting from the biggest offender to the rarest, we take a closer look at the Dementia’s facing younger people:
Alzheimer’s- 1/3rd of EOSD patients have Alzheimer’s Disease
The Disease works in exactly the same way as it does in over 65 cases which you can read more about here. Plaques and Tangles cause blockages in the Brains functionality, killing off cells as they grow. Starting in the Hippocampus part of the brain and progressively moving on to further parts of the brain. If you would like to know more about Alzheimer’s click here
Alzheimer’s Disease is particularly prevalent in families with a history of Early Onset Alzheimer’s and also in people with Downs Syndrome.
Vascular Dementia- is next on our list account for 20% of EOSD cases
Vascular Dementia is all to do with a hindered supply of blood to important parts of the brain, whether hampered by a significant stroke, mini stroke’s or Small Vessel Disease the results are the same. Lack of blood means a lack of oxygen and nutrients so affected parts of the brain, called infarcts, die off thus preventing our brain’s from working in the way they always have. To learn more about VD please click here
Frontotemporal Dementia- Responsible for 12% of EOSD cases
40% of these cases have a hereditary link, meaning that someone else in your family also had this specific kind of dementia before you. We use our Frontal and Temporal Lobes for some very critical day to day activity, they prescribe our personality, our decision making, our movements and lastly how we speak along with the comprehension of hearing what others are saying to us.
As such when Tau’s (like the tangles in Alzheimer’s) attack nerve endings and kill them off our brain has to rewire itself to find new routes of communication between cells.
This means that in certain cases we notice severe behavioural changes, and erratic actions.
Alternatively we lose control of certain movements and limbs (CBD). We can also find that we have problems speech fluency and word association (PPA). Over time all of these aspects will converge and accumulate becoming highly debilitating. To find out more please click here.
Karsakoff’s Syndrome- around 10% of EOSD patients have this
Whilst this sounds like a type of weapon it actually describes a type of Dementia caused by a lack of Vitamin B1, which helps our liver store and utilise Vitamins. This illness is often associated with those who have been heavy drinkers and alcoholics, as their liver’s have been damaged to such a degree and quite often with a poor diet to match, limits the provision of nutrients needed to keep them healthy.
With thanks to:Young Dementia UK, Dementia Concern, Alzheimer’s Society, The Telegraph
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