Understanding The Differences Between Dementia And Alzheimer’s Disease

Many people often use the terms dementia and Alzheimer’s disease interchangeably, but they are quite different in reality. Although they share some common grounds, there are some vital differences between them. Dementia is not a specific disease but is an umbrella term for various types of diseases. Alzheimer’s disease is a type of dementia. 

Several mental health conditions fall under the category of dementia. Other than Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease are other types of dementia. Valley forge home care service crafts a personalized treatment plan for each Alzheimer’s patient to meet their needs. 

What is dementia?

Dementia is a syndrome. Syndromes are a group of symptoms that do not have specific causes. Dementia refers to the collection of various symptoms that can affect a wide range of mental conditions. The condition affects a person’s mental cognitive functions, such as remembering, focusing, thinking, problem-solving, language use, and visual perception. 

Dementia is a generic term for various types of diseases, of which Alzheimer’s is one. Dementia has various stages, and people can have more than one type of dementia. The reason why dementia and Alzheimer’s are so commonly used interchangeably is because Alzheimer’s is the most common form of the disease. Approximately 70% of dementia patients have Alzheimer’s disease. 

Although the actual cause of dementia is unknown, and different types may have different causes, the condition is usually seen in people older than 85 years. As you age, your brain cells start to get damaged, which may have a part to play in the disease. 


  • Anxiety and distress
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Psychosis
  • Walking around without reason
  • Forgetfulness
  • Detachment 
  • Disinterest
  • Bad mood
  • Inappropriate behavior
  • Repeating the same questions

What is Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s disease is a type of dementia. Therefore, not everyone who has dementia has Alzheimer’s disease. The condition causes impairment in memory and has no known cure. Just like dementia, this condition has no known cause. However, researchers have come up with a theory that Alzheimer’s disease occurs when unusual proteins build up in your brain and create plaque and tangles, which causes the symptoms. As time passes, these proteins damage the brain ultimately, and they stop working at one point. 

The areas of the brain where these plaques are formed are crucial for long-term memory recall. When these proteins are built up, the connection between the brain cells is lost, and as a result, they begin to die. 


  • Difficulty remembering recently occurred conversations or events
  • Confusion
  • Impaired judgment
  • Disorientation
  • Behavioral changes
  • In the advanced stages of the disease, the patient may experience difficulty walking, swallowing, and speaking.
  • Suspicions about people around them