Nearly three-quarters of patients in long term care have some form of memory impairment or dementia. And while some forgetfulness is a normal part of the aging process, memory loss can also be overlooked as an early symptom of cognitive impairment. How can physicians distinguish between common memory loss and cognitive impairment? Dr. David Smith, professor of family medicine at the College of Medicine at Texas A&M University, College Station; and president of Geriatric Consultants of Central Texas in Brownwood, Texas, discusses the nuances of different forms of cognitive impairment, and emphasizes the importance of early diagnosis. What activities, medications, environments and other strategies can help physicians slow cognitive decline in these patients? Dr. Eric Tangalos hosts.