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Dementia Education Online
 
 

Module 1: What is Dementia?

 

Introduction

Dementia is the most significant neurological disorder experienced by persons aged over 65 years. Although predominantly associated with increased aging, there are also types of dementia which occur in people under 65 years.

It usually presents as a syndrome of chronic or progressive nature, with changes in memory, thinking, orientation, comprehension, calculation, learning capacity, language and judgment.

Thus it is a condition which has an impact on many aspects of the lives of both the people with dementia and their family members. It is also likely to result in many encounters with health care professionals across all disciplines and care settings.

Aims

The aims of this learning module are to:

  • Present the incidence and prevalence of data on dementia
  • Provide an overview of the different types of dementia and the pathophysiological features associated with the different types of dementia
  • Highlight the distinctive issues of dementia within Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islanders communities and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse communities
  • Provide an overview of the impact of dementia from the perspective of a person with dementia and a carer

Outcomes

By the end of this learning module you will have an awareness and understanding of the following:

  • Overall trend of incidence and prevalence of dementia across different age groups
  • Different types of dementia and pathophysiological features associated with the different types of dementia
  • Distinctive issues of dementia within Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islanders communities and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse communities
  • What a person with dementia and a carer consider the impact of dementia is on their lives

Content Focus Area

This learning module is built around four content focus areas:

  1. Epidemiological trends of dementia
  2. Types of dementia and the associated pathophysiological features
  3. Distinctive issues for special groups
  4. Impact of dementia on person and his/her family

How to Complete this Module

To complete this learning module work through the activities associated with the four content focus areas and complete the five learning activities.

References have been provided to enable you to complete the module, while the range of learning activities provided will facilitate your learning about these topic areas.



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