What is Delirium? - Geriatrics and Extended Care
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What is Delirium?

What is Delirium?


Delirium is also known as “brain failure” or “confused state” and happens rapidly. It causes problems with attention, thinking, memory, and emotion. Delirium can change over the course of hours or days. 

  • Delirium is a medical problem, not a mental health problem.
  • Delirium is a serious issue. It will not get better on its own.
  • The most common causes of delirium are medications and infections.

Delirium comes on quickly (over a period of days), while dementia comes on slowly (over months to years).  People with dementia are more prone to get delirium.