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Dementia, also known as senility, is a broad category of brain diseases that cause a long term and often gradual decrease in the ability to think and remember that is great enough to affect a person's daily functioning.
Other common symptoms include emotional problems, problems with language, and a decrease in motivation. A person's consciousness is usually not affected.
A dementia diagnosis requires a change from a person's usual mental functioning and a greater decline than one would expect due to aging.
These diseases also have a significant effect on a person's caregivers.