Information for Patients
Also called: Senility
Dementia is the name for a group of symptoms caused by disorders that affect the brain. It is not a specific disease. People with dementia may not be able to think well enough to do normal activities, such as getting dressed or eating. They may lose their ability to solve problems or control their emotions. Their personalities may change. They may become agitated or see things that are not there.
Memory loss is a common symptom of dementia. However, memory loss by itself does not mean you have dementia. People with dementia have serious problems with two or more brain functions, such as memory and language. Although dementia is common in very elderly people, it is not part of normal aging.
Many different diseases can cause dementia, including Alzheimer's disease and stroke. Drugs are available to treat some of these diseases. While these drugs cannot cure dementia or repair brain damage, they may improve symptoms or slow down the disease.
NIH: National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
- Dementia (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Dementia - behavior and sleep problems (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Dementia - daily care (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Dementia - keeping safe in the home (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Dementia and driving (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Dementia due to metabolic causes (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Mental status testing (Medical Encyclopedia)
Prescription Drug Abuse
If you take a medicine in a way that is different from what the doctor prescribed, it is called prescription drug abuse. It could be
- Taking a medicine that was prescribed for someone else
- Taking a larger dose than you are supposed to
- Taking the medicine in a different way than you are supposed to. This might be crushing tablets and then snorting or injecting them.
- Using the medicine for another purpose, such as getting high
Abusing some prescription drugs can lead to addiction. These include opioids, sedatives, tranquilizers, and stimulants.
Every medicine has some risk of side effects. Doctors take this into account when prescribing medicines. People who abuse these drugs may not understand the risks. The medicines may not be safe for them, especially at higher doses or when taken with other medicines.
NIH: National Institute on Drug Abuse
- Substance use -- prescription drugs (Medical Encyclopedia)