autonomy – The right for every patient to make decisions for him or herself.

beta-amyloid – A protein that when accumulated outside of neurons into beta-amyloid plaques is believed to interfere with neuron-to-neuron communication at the synapses and contribute to cell death.

competence – A legal designation that is determined by the legal system.

decision making capacity – A clinical concept assessed within healthcare systems.

decision making surrogate – A family member, friend, social organization, or governmental agency appointed in advance by an individual, to make decisions on behalf of the individual when they are no longer able to make decisions on their own.

dementia with Lewy bodies – Dementia resulting from Lewy bodies formed in the cortex of the brain.

dysphagia – Trouble swallowing.

genetic mutations – An abnormal change in the sequence of chemical pairs that make up genes.

incompetent – A designation by the courts when an individual has significantly impaired decision making capacity.

legal guardian – A person appointed by the court when an individual is deemed incompetent.

Lewy body – A round inclusion seen in the substantia nigra which indicates a damaged or dying cell.

medical power of attorney – A legal instrument that is used by an individual to appoint a surrogate in the cases where the individual does not have capacity to consent to a certain procedure. Revocability is determined by the individual.

neurons – Nerve cells.

place-based care – Providing oral health interventions directly where the people live, work, go to school, worship, or receive social services.

sialorrhea – Excessive salivation, drooling.

synapses – Long branching extensions that connect neurons in the brain.

tau tangles – A protein in neurons that is believed to block the transport of nutrients and other essential molecules and contribute to cell death.

vascular dementia – Post stroke or multi-infarct dementia.