Dementia and depression have oddly similar symptoms and signs many people do not realize. While both conditions can be long-term, dementia is especially progressive and affects every part of the brain.
If you have somebody in your life that is growing older, you may have noticed some changes in their physical and emotional health. You might feel yourself becoming concerned that your loved one is living with depression or dementia. Understanding these signs will help you determine how to move forward with diagnosis and treatment.
Individuals with both dementia and depression may both exhibit symptoms of memory loss. One of the keys to remember is that dementia is more linked to short-term memory loss than depression. On the other hand, depression comes with difficulty concentrating which may look like memory loss on the surface.
Individuals with dementia may experience a social decline in a number of ways. For instance, many elderly people with dementia begin to behave inappropriately in different situations. Additionally, dementia can influence a person's entire personality. On the other hand, the social decline associated with depression is often based on isolation and choosing to withdraw out of lethargy, anxiety, or apathy.
Individuals with dementia often struggle to provide specific answers to questions. Additionally, individuals with dementia may experience a decline in writing and using motor skills during communication. Depression does not come with the same loss of skills in communication, though individuals with this condition may not feel like being social when they are having a depressive episode or mood.
Many people with dementia feel disoriented at random, becoming confused or lost easily. Those with depression typically do not have this problem with confusing names and dates. On the other hand, individuals with depression may find it difficult to make simple decisions.
Individuals with depression may express feelings of unhappiness or discontentment much of the time. These individuals may feel life is no longer worth living, for instance. They may exhibit these feelings outwardly by crying, but sometimes this is directed more inward. Keep in mind that sometimes depression looks more like apathy.
Are you unsure if your loved one has dementia or depression? Treatment can help people living with both conditions so that they can live more comfortably, either with medication, medical intervention, or therapy. If your loved one has been diagnosed with either condition, reaching out to a skilled nursing facility may be beneficial as well.
13 October 2018
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