David Cassidy is battling dementia, People magazine reported. The 66-year-old former star of "The Partridge Family" said, “I was in denial, but a part of me always knew this was coming."

Dementia is not a specific disease, but rather an overall term for those suffering from a wide range of symptoms. The most common form of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease, which accounts for 60 to 80 percent of cases, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.

Read: Alzheimer's Disease: 5 Common Myths And Facts, From Risk Factors To Stages Of Life

Cassidy’s diagnosis is not an unusual one. As of 2013, as many as 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease – a number that is expected to increase dramatically over the next four years unless preventative measures are developed, according to research published in Neurology.

While many people have memory loss issues, this alone does not mean they suffer from a form of dementia. According to the National Institute on Aging and the Alzheimer’s Association, signs of Alzheimer’s may include one or more of the following:

  • Memory loss
  • Taking longer than usual to accomplish normal daily tasks
  • Difficulty reading or solving problems
  • Trouble handling personal finances
  • Poor judgement leading to bad decisions
  • Withdrawal from work or social activities
  • Losing things and being unable to retrace steps
  • Mood and personality changes

Long story-telling that seems to drag on may also be an early symptom, according to new Alzheimer’s research, International Business Times reported.

Caring for a loved one who is suffering from Alzheimer’s may sometimes be frustrating; however, it is important to remember they cannot control their symptoms and there is currently no cure for the disease. The National Institute on Aging details a long list on how to communicate with someone with Alzheimer’s. Some of their tips include:

  • Remain patient and encourage the person to communicate with you
  • Be simple and clear with your communication
  • Avoid arguing or reasoning with the person
  • Use humor to lighten the mood
  • Reassure the person that you are there to help

Death rates for Alzheimer’s continue to rise, research shows. Extensive research is being done to better understand the disease, which is not a normal part of aging.

See also: Alzheimer’s Disease: Vaccine Prevents Tau Protein Buildup To Stop The Disorder In Its Tracks

Earliest Sign Of Alzheimer’s Onset Identified As Decline In Glucose Levels; Research Suggests Way To Prevent Neurodegenerative Disease