Sometimes it may seem like doctors don't know anything about dementia - especially Frontotemporal Dementia. Alzheimer's Disease affects about 5.7 million people in the United States and Canada. Frontotemporal Dementia is considered one of the "related dementias" that resemble Alzheimer's Disease because they all involve a progressive - and irreversible - degeneration of brain cells. That list also includes Parkinson's Disease, Vascular Dementia, and Huntington's Disease.
Some organizations and physicians call the illness Frontotemporal Degeneration to focus attention on the process of brain deterioration. Either way, it's likely to alter the personality of your loved one.
So what is dementia anyway? Technically, it's a broad term indicating a series of symptoms rather than an actual illness. According to doctors, it's defined as an increasing difficulty with thinking and personality changes that prevent someone from functioning independently. Dementia is a permanent condition that worsens over time, unlike temporary inefficiency from partying too hard and losing sleep one weekend.