Concerns about memory, word-finding, or other cognitive (mental function) problems are common among older adults. A mild cognitive problem is different from dementia, however, because dementia is diagnosed only when both memory and another cognitive function are each affected severely enough to interfere with a person's ability to carry out routine daily activities. Dementia is much more severe than a mild memory problem such as difficulty recalling names. The July 22/29, 2009, issue of JAMA includes an article about mild cognitive impairment. This Patient Page is based on one published in the October 1, 2008, issue.