The Laptop that this problem is occurring on is an Inspiron 15R Non Touch, in case this helps anyone. I don't know the EXACT model besides 15R and that it's not a touch-screen, though.
So, the driver, namely the Centrino driver listed above, as of yesterday, October 28, 2013, decided not to play nice with me and decided to simply stop working. It isn't like the laptop was dropped or I downloaded some malware or anything like that. It simply stopped working and turned off the laptop's ability to use Wi-FI.
I've tried several fixes already. I've tried redownloading the packets that contain the driver and reinstalling them (which either do nothing or give me a message saying that I can't install said package onto my computer), I've tried uninstalling the driver in the Device Manager and then using Check for Hardware Changes to have it reinstall the software for the drivers there (note: When the driver stops working, Check for Hardware Changes doesn't even recognize that the driver is there), and I've also uninstalled my Norton Antivirus and replaced it with a different one, since these issues began happening when I ran Full System Scans with Norton. It's probably a coincidence, since switching the antivirus still didn't bring the driver back, but nonetheless I decided to get rid of it as a precaution.
The only way to get the Centrino driver to work again is to turn off the computer and leave it for a long period of time; like, 4 hours or so, then the laptop freezes on the Dell startup screen when I try turning it back on again. Turning it off via the power button and rebooting it again causes it to run normally, including the driver, which begins working again.
The Centrino driver has cut off for me twice in the last two days, and I don't want it to do this to me if I need the wireless connection for something important, so is there any kind of fixes that anyone can recommend or should I take the computer in to a repair shop for a look?
It is not normal for a wireless adapter to just disappear from device manager; this behavior is most likely related to a hardware issue. Considering the fact that your system is also freezing I would highly recommend contacting your system manufacturer.