Anti aging guide

Alzheimer’s Senile Dementia

 

 

Alzheimer’s Senile Dementia is a common disease that affects cognition, intelligence and memory

This awful disease affects millions of people in the UK, USA and Western Europe. One in 20 people over the age of 65 has dementia and this narrows down to one in five over the age of 80.

Dementia is a progressive worsening of the mental faculties which devastates cognition, intelligence and memory. It is due to certain changes in the brain, including a build-up of damaging and unnecessary chemical substances inside the brain cells. Some scientists see Alzheimer’s dementia as a natural consequence of aging (ie, we will all get it if we live long enough), whereas others see it as a separate and independent disease which sooner or later will be cured. Scientific opinion constantly swings from one point of view to the other.

People who have had a poor education and therefore did not exercise their brain enough face an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s dementia, according to a study published in the British Medical Journal.

There is no known cure for Alzheimer’s dementia, despite some claims to the contrary. Certain other cases of dementia, however, are not due to age degeneration alone but to preventable causes, like artery disease (‘multi-infarct dementia’), vitamin B12 deficiency (‘megaloblastic madness’), alcohol abuse or thyroid problems (‘myxoedema madness’).

Patients suffering from dementia may be unable to remember events which happened some days or weeks ago. During the early stages, they may still remember events which happened many years ago. Eventually, though, these memories go as well.

Memory problems may be caused not only by the processes of dementia, but also by other factors. One example is atrial fibrillation, which is a form of irregular heartbeat very common in later life. Italian researchers have discovered that atrial fibrillation makes brain problems worse because it causes tiny blood clots which go on to block the small arteries in the brain. The researchers recommend regular checks with a doctor who would be able to diagnose atrial fibrillation and then prescribe anti-clotting drugs, such as aspirin, to prevent further damage.

Apart from memory loss, other problems seen frequently in dementia include:

  • Depression
  • No interest in personal hygiene
  • Confusion
  • Reduced learning ability or loss of concentration
  • Restlessness
  • Incontinence

Certain treatments aim to replace the missing acetylcholine or the other chemical messengers in the brain. These use drugs such as Aricept and Excelon, but unfortunately they are not always effective.

There is, however, some evidence that certain supplements have a positive effect on dementia. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that one third of patients suffering from Alzheimer’s dementia showed some improvement after being treated with ginkgo biloba. For the effects to become apparent the patients had to take ginkgo for several months. Several other studies also support this conclusion.

Experiments looking at the action of the co-enzyme 010 in rats showed that it stimulated the activity of their brains and increased the use of energy by one third. When a toxin was given to the rats, the brains of those who were treated with Q10 did not suffer any damage, suggesting that Q10 is a strong brain cell protector.

In an attempt to reduce the effects of dementia, researchers have used reminiscence therapy, reality orientation and re-motivation therapies in groups of patients. Those who received the treatment showed a significant improvement of their mental power. This research suggests that stimulating the brain is essential in slowing down the effects of dementia.

Complementary treatments for dementia aim to lessen the burden of the disease, but do not affect its progress. Treatments include:

  • Massage for mental and physical relaxation
  • Nutritional therapy with suitable natural and organic ingredients to fortify the body
  • Music therapy to revive lost memories and to stimulate the brain

An alternative strategy, which aims to prevent or reduce the effects of dementia and memory loss, includes:

  • Following a low fat diet
  • Using a combination of co-enzyme 010 with vitamins E and B
  • Extra phosphatidyl serine, vinpocetine and ginkgo biloba, plus pregnenolone, DHEA and selegiline
  • Mind/body exercises, including breathing, relaxation and brain exercises

A few doctors also recommend RN13 and SAMe on top of all of the above for good measure. For more details on these drugs see chapter 10. This strategy has been advised by some experts in dementia but the majority of conventional doctors don’t endorse it.

Posted by Carol Hudgens - March 17, 2012 at 6:10 pm