Lion’s Mane and Dementia (Health Benefits)

lion's mane and dementia

There has been a lot of interest in the topic of lion’s mane and dementia that we received from our users.

Many users are wondering whether lion’s mane offers any health benefits to persons who have dementia.

Can lion’s mane reverse Dementia?

This is based on the fact that the mushroom has been documented to help individuals with several illnesses, including:

Before answering whether lion’s mane is beneficial to persons with dementia, it is important to first understand what lion’s mane is.

It is a type of mushroom that is also known as yamabushitake or hou tou gu according to Healthline.

The nootropic food appears to be white, large, and shaggy resembling a lion’s scruff.

The edible fungus is mostly in use in Asian countries like Korea, China, Japan, and India. Mainly for its medical and culinary uses.

You can eat lion’s mane mushrooms raw, cooked, steeped as tea, or dried.

Also, you can get extracts of the mushroom over the counter as health supplements.

Experts reveal that lion’s mane mushrooms have bioactive substances that are beneficial to the human body particularly the gut, heart, and brain.

We uncover how lion’s mane can benefit persons with dementia below.

Note: Feel free to check our top herbs for dementia if you seek more natural ways to alleviate the condition.

Health Benefits of Lion’s Mane

health benefits of lion's mane and dementia

Research focusing on this edible fungus has revealed that it offers multiple health perks.

A study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry lists numerous benefits of the mushroom saying that it has properties like:

  • Anticarcinogenic
  • Antibiotic
  • Antihypertensive
  • Anti-fatigue
  • Antidiabetic
  • Anti-aging
  • Anti-hyperlipodemic
  • Hepatoprotective
  • Cardioprotective
  • Neuroprotective
  • Nephroprotective

The study also states that the mushroom enhances cognitive function, depression, and anxiety.

These are common symptoms that persons with dementia have. Very likely the cause that pushed the study of lion’s mane and dementia.

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Ways Lion’s Mane May Help Individuals with Dementia


ways lion's mane may help individuals with dementia
People with dementia might benefit from lion’s mane in several ways like:

Boosts Brain Function

Research on this mushroom indicates that it may have a significant impact on neurodegenerative diseases like dementia.

One of the ways lion’s mane affects the function of the brain is through enhancing neurite outgrowth according to research published in the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms.

This outgrowth can potentially reverse or slow down cell degeneration in the brain which is a character of illnesses like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s (different types of dementia).

The mushroom can help improve memory

Animal research published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine revealed that the mushroom helped to improve memory in mice that had Alzheimer’s and those that did not have.

It also stimulated cognitive function.

A medical trial conducted in Japan affirmed that the edible mushroom helps to improve cognitive function in women and men aged 50-80 years.

Participants of the study took a lion’s mane tablet 3 times a day for 16 weeks. Researchers then continued to observe them for 4 more weeks.

The experts observed that the persons who took lion’s mane scored higher on the cognitive function scale than the group that was on the placebos.

The authors of the study were confident that the mushroom offers an effective treatment for mild cognitive impairment.

Enhance Digestive Health

Lion’s mane is known for its strong anti-inflammatory properties and it may improve the function of the stomach and the digestive system.

Molecules in the mushroom also help to relieve and prevent oxidative stress that is caused by exposure to chemicals in the environment and poor nutrition.

Improve Mental Health and Well-Being- Lion’s mane supplements might help people feel better by reducing mental health effects and improving sleep.

Consuming the mushroom may also be a natural way of treating anxiety and depression.

Furthermore, studies also indicate that the mushroom can enhance immune function.

May Help Protect Against Dementia

lion's mane might help protect against dementia
Studies reveal that the lion’s mane mushroom has two special compounds, erinacines and hericeones. These stimulate the growth of brain cells.

Animal studies also report that the mushrooms may help protect against the development of Alzheimer’s disease (AD).

To further talk about lion’s mane and dementia, it’s essential to note that the mushroom and its extracts have been shown to reduce memory loss symptoms in mice.

Researchers also state that it helps to prevent neural damage due to amyloid-beta plaques that accumulate in the brain during AD.

Closing Remarks – Lion’s Mane and Dementia


lion’s mane and dementia supplementMany studies on the subject of lion’s mane and dementia still try to figure out if the mushroom is beneficial for people living with the progressive illness.

This means more research still needs to be done to offer more conclusive results on the protective benefits of the mushroom on the brain.

Always talk to your doctor first before starting taking any supplements.

10 Best Herbs for Dementia & Brain Health 2023

herbs for dementia

Through the years, we have studied and tested several herbs for dementia that you can use for people with the illness.

These are GREAT to improve brain health and even treat memory loss.

Some of these herbs have been studied for their effect on dementia and others have been tested for the effect they have on cognition which is the mental process involved in understanding, thinking, remembering, and learning.

Best Herbs for Dementia

Here are some herbs that may be beneficial for natural dementia treatment.

1. Sage

Many people recognize this herb for its PUNGENT smell.

Studies reveal that sage might also help treat dementia and enhance cognition.

One of the research reviews that was published back in 2017 stated that sage is rich in compounds that are beneficial for both neurological and cognitive function.

2. Rosemary

Rosemary is indeed a great herb for cooking different cuisines.

What you may NOT KNOW is that this herb with a lovely smell also contains some anti-inflammatory properties that can assist with memory issues.

It produces similar results to those of numerous Alzheimer’s drugs.

A controlled study with seniors showed that rosemary promotes memory and performance.

Another way persons with dementia can use rosemary is through aromatherapy where they get to utilize the potential of the herb’s potent essential oil.

3. Ginseng

It is NOT possible to mention herbs for dementia without talking about ginseng.

The herb has numerous benefits that include reducing inflammation, improving brain function, and reducing stress levels.

A high percentage of people with dementia will benefit from ginseng treatment as it is known to CLINICALLY improve cognition.

4. Turmeric

Turmeric is rich in a compound known as curcumin which has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.

These are two major factors that not only benefit brain health but your OVERALL health as well.

A review that was published in 2010 research suggests that turmeric may stave off dementia and boost brain health by getting rid of a protein fragment known as beta-amyloid.

Note that the build-up of these protein fragments is what leads to the formation of Alzheimer’s related BRAIN PLAQUES.

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia.

Additionally, turmeric may help to inhibit the breakdown of brain nerve cells which, in turn, protects brain health.

5. Salvia

Also known as red sage root or dan shen, this is an essential herb in Chinese medicine.

Traditionally, it was mostly administered for its CALMING effect.

Modern scientific experiments disclose that salvia is helpful when it comes to enhancing microcirculation by dilating blood vessels which then improves blood circulation.

In addition to this, it can also help to slow blood clotting.

6. Ashwagandha

This is another plant that makes it on the list of herbs for dementia.

It belongs to the tomato family and is native to the dry regions of Northern Africa, India, and the Middle East.

For years, it has been a staple for ayurvedic medicine because it PROMOTES healthy sleep, fights disease, and restores energy.

Recently, studies have shown that it also has the potential to improve memory and learning.

Ayurvedic practitioners recommend the herb as an agent for FIGHTING FORGETFULNESS and as a brain booster.

Researchers at Newcastle University reported that ashwagandha inhibits the formation of beta-amyloid plaques.

These are the plaques that accumulate in the brains of persons with neurodegenerative illnesses like dementia and are known to be toxic to cells in the human brain.

Scientists at the National Brain Research Centre also tested the herb on mice with Alzheimer’s.

The mice recorded IMPROVED cognitive performance after 20 days of undergoing treatment.

After 30 days, the study reveals that the brain function of the ill mice returned to normal and the amyloid plaques that were in the mice’s brain reduced significantly.

7. Ginkgo Biloba

ginkgo biloba
When talking about herbs for dementia we absolutely need to mention Ginkgo Biloba.

Commonly taken in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine), the herb has been used for a LONG TIME to treat dementia.

The experts who advocate for Ginkgo Biloba claim that it helps to promote blood flow by stimulating circulation something that enhances cognitive function.

Conclusive research still needs to be done on the herb because studies generate MIXED results.

8. Gotu Kola

gotu kola
In popular alternative medicine systems like TCM and Ayurveda, Gotu kola has been used to improve mental clarity for a long time.

Animal-based research also confirms that the herb can help fight oxidative stress which is beneficial for brain health.

A preliminary study that was published in 2003 in Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology & Physiology states that tests of rats concluded that Gotu kola has the potential to stop oxidative stress associated with Alzheimer’s, and it may also BOOST cognitive function.

9. Lemon Balm

Most people will consume lemon balm in tea form to ease insomnia and anxiety.

These are TWO SYMPTOMS that are common with dementia.

Studies show that this herb can also heighten cognitive function reason it is listed among herbs for dementia.

A study published in 2003 in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry explained that 42 patients with Alzheimer’s took lemon balm extract or a placebo for 4 months.

When the study came to an end, it was recorded that those who were taking lemon balm showed improvements in cognitive function when compared to the ones who were on the placebo.

10. Huperzine A

huperzine a
In China, it is estimated that more than 100,000 individuals with dementia have been treated using Huperzine A.

They use it to treat AD and other types of dementia in the region. It is extracted or manufactured from club moss extract.

TRADITIONALLY, they mainly use it to treat inflammation and fever.

The herb has also been known to reduce cell injury from epilepsy, strokes, and other disorders.

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Mend Support Daily SupplementMEND Daily Support SupplementTurmeric 300mg
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Closing Remarks

The use of herbs and natural remedies is quite promising when it comes to early treatment of dementia and other conditions that involve poor memory.

While taking herbs for dementia may be considered beneficial for the brain, it is important to seek medical advice before you START taking the herbs so that you can get the GREEN LIGHT on whether to continue or not.

Keep in mind that it is best to add small amounts of herbs and spices to your food or beverage.

More is not necessarily better as it can lead to adverse side effects, especially when it comes to spicy food.

Finally, you can GROW many HERBS AT HOME, too.

For this, we prepared a full article on how to grow a therapeutic indoor garden.


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Read our comprehensive review of ProMind Complex HERE.

Sensory Rooms For Dementia (Healing?)

sensory rooms for dementia

Improvements in health care have led to the introduction of new care options one of them being sensory rooms for dementia.

Our extensive overview helps you get familiar with the rooms and how they can POSITIVELY impact the individual.

Alzheimer’ describes sensory rooms as special places for persons living with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease to explore and stimulate all five senses safely.

Sensory Rooms for Patients with Dementia

sensory rooms for patients with dementia
In the past, these spaces were mainly in use to help younger people with physical or learning disabilities.

Experts uncovered that sensory rooms can also be useful for people with different types of dementia.

The rooms can either be used for stimulating or calming an individual depending on what they need.

Read on to find out more about the sensory rooms including what they feature, their benefits, research into the topic, and whether they offer healing to persons with dementia.

Features of Sensory Rooms

Different types of sensory rooms for dementia exist.

features of sensory rooms

Some are high-tech unique environments with trailblazing technology while others are basic rooms featuring comfortable furniture, tactile objects, and other engaging and simple objects.

It goes to show that no two sensory rooms are identical.

The primary aim of the room is to stimulate senses of taste, sound, sight, movement, and smell. Offering a wide range of activities that helps with concentration while offering relaxation or stimulation dependent on sensory need.

These special spaces can have a combination of different ELEMENTS such as:

  • Gentle light
  • Music/sound beams
  • Movement
  • Tactile objects
  • Bean bags
  • Bubble walls and tubes
  • Soft textiles and floor mats
  • Acrylic mirrors
  • Interesting things to taste and smell
  • Film
  • Fibre optics
  • Familiar everyday objects

At the end of the day, a sensory room should offer several factors to the persons using it and these should include:

  • It should be age-appropriate and usable
  • Be safe and comfortable
  • Offer a multi-sensory experience
  • Have no clutter (a clear free space)
  • Provide relaxation and stimulation
  • Offer interaction and control

Do Sensory Rooms offer Healing?

do sensory rooms offer healing
It is important to note that to date, there is still no approved cure for dementia.

Persons with dementia can, however, benefit from the use of sensory rooms for dementia in multiple ways.

Dr. Anke Jakob from Kingston University in London says that the sensory rooms can HELP ENHANCE feelings of comfort and wellbeing, relieve pain and stress, and maximize an individual’s potential to focus.

The doctor reckons that the above can help enhance memory and communication.

Benefits of Sensory Rooms

benefits of sensory rooms
Individuals living with dementia can enjoy a variety of benefits when using sensory rooms for dementia and some of them include:

  • Enhanced mood
  • Increased knowledge and understanding of the environment
  • Declined frequency in disruptive, aggressive, violent, and oppositional behaviors
  • Decreased anxiety
  • Increased interpersonal interaction
  • Less fear
  • Enhanced caretaker-patient communication
  • Low risk and non-invasive therapy
  • Develops and engages senses
  • Boosts autonomy and confidence
  • Offers a diverse and rich experience
  • Improved social and language skills
  • Reduced reliance on medication, etc.

Research into the Effectiveness of Sensory Rooms for Dementia

Several studies have been conducted on the effectiveness of sensory rooms for persons who are living with dementia.

research into the effectiveness of sensory rooms for dementia

An example is Occupational Therapy research at Southampton which revealed that multi-sensory environments can assist in preserving occupational and cognitive behavior.

In an interview with New Boundaries, Dr, Lesley Collier a senior lecturer in occupational therapy at the University of Southampton reported that the research involved modifying stimuli amounts and adjusting sensory input to meet sensory needs.

This was based on the fact that the environment around the person with dementia contributes to cognitive deterioration.

The main aim of the research was to work with individuals living with dementia to try and reduce symptoms by allowing the affected individuals to practice daily tasks in a sensory stimulation and controlled environment.

Professionals conducting the research started by observing a person with dementia in a multi-sensory room.

A person can become more focused

They said that they noticed that he has become more focused and would pick up equipment, smile, vocalize, and proceed to move on.

This was the opposite of the “normal behavior” he exhibited which was usually an inability to settle on any activity and aggression.

Following this study, the researchers went on to collaborate with Rompa the firm that produces the Snoezelen room.

This is a kind of multi-sensory environment for use in hospitals, therapy centers, care homes, schools, and homes.

More independence

Professionals stated that individuals who spent time in structured multi-sensory rooms enjoyed more independence in functional performance.

They carry out daily living activities like putting on their shoes and using a fork and knife to eat with little performance errors.

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence recommends the use of multi-sensory activities for persons with dementia as a result of this research.

Dr. Collier also stated that she is working with therapists and representatives in different parts of the globe to assist persons with dementia get the maximum benefit from multi-sensory treatments.

Moving forward, more research will be conducted to get a better understanding of how specific sensory input influences performance. Dr, Lesley is interested in monitoring brain activity while a person living with dementia is using a multi-sensory room.

Closing Thoughts

Even as more research is needed into the effectiveness of sensory rooms for dementia, there is evidence that they can be helpful to persons living with dementia.

They only need to be designed well and have appropriate elements that will be useful to the people in need.

The sensory rooms can be in care homes, hospitals, or even in homes depending on the stage of dementia a person is in.

Pet Therapy and Dementia (Any Benefits?)

pet therapy and dementia

We read numerous studies and experienced the amazing benefits of pet therapy and dementia management several times.

Animals HAVE A WAY of improving the quality of life for humans.

We can describe pet therapy as the use of dogs or other pets to help individuals cope with health issues, or recover from disorders and diseases.

The Magic Of Pet Therapy for Dementia

American Senior Communities reports that with just 15 minutes of bonding, animals can significantly reduce a person’s stress levels.

This is through hormonal changes in the brain which produce more “feel-good” hormones such as oxytocin, prolactin, and serotonin.

Read on to uncover more details on:

  • Types of pet therapy
  • How pet therapy helps people who have dementia
  • Robotic animals

Types of Pet Therapy

types of pet therapy
Pet therapy also known as animal-assistant therapy can include bird aviaries, cats, fish aquariums, dogs, and farm animals like horses or rabbits.

Generally, there are two ways in which persons with dementia can engage in this alternative therapy.

One is through owning a pet that the affected individual loves and accepts.

The other is through animal visits from time to time.

Most importantly, to reap the benefits of pet therapy and dementia management, it is IMPORTANT that all animals used for the therapy be certified, well-trained, stay up-to-date on their shots, and be monitored for safety purposes.

This ensures a mutually beneficial relationship. It also MINIMIZES exposure for persons with allergies or do not want to interact with pets.

Assisted-animal therapy can be conducted in a group setting or individually.

Individuals with dementia can interact with animals through different methods. These could be caring for them, walking them, petting them, playing with them, or just cuddling.

How Pet Therapy Helps People with Dementia

how pet therapy helps people with dementia
There are different ways in which persons with dementia benefit from pet therapy.

These usually come from the fact that pets do not judge, and they offer lots of fun, companionship, and love.

Here are some of the ways that people living with dementia can benefit from assisted animal therapy.

Alleviating Agitation and Negative Behavioural Expressions

A study conducted in 2020 stated that after residents spent time with a dog in an assisted living community, residents experienced FEWER moments of upset and negative thinking, as well as other behavior changes throughout the day.

Increased Mental Stimulation

Interacting with adorable animals helps to increase mental stimulation one of the BIGGEST pet therapy BENEFITS as it can increase memory recall.

Boosting Physical Activity Levels

boosting physical activity levels
Tossing a ball with a dog, stroking a cat’s fur, or going for a brief walk with a loving pet are some of the ways that persons with dementia participate in daily physical activities.

This can also lead to improved motor skills and joint movement.

Improving Nutrition

Another study revealed that after visiting with a domestic animal, residents showed signs of improved appetite and over time started to gain weight.

The residents also required fewer nutritional supplements which, in turn, reduced costs associated with care.

Sense of Responsibility

Many people with dementia usually battle with the fact that they are no longer as independent as they used to be.

Spending time with a pet helps to make them feel “useful” again by offering a sense of purpose. Something to look forward to every day.

Calming Effect

calming effect
When looking into the benefits of pet therapy and dementia management, it also helps to mention that animals offer a soothing presence.

This is highly welcomed especially to seniors who crave unconditional love and companionship.

It is hard to stay anxious or angry when spending time with a fluffy animal with a goofy grin or one that keeps asking for a pet.

This also helps to EASE FEELINGS of loneliness and depression.


Interacting with pets can help invoke feelings of old memories, playfulness, happiness, and joy in persons with the illness.

This can also help a person remember a pet they once took care of.

Note: Don’t forget to read about the effects of reminiscence therapy for dementia.

Increased Social Interaction

Research found that animal-assisted therapy is also associated with an increase in social interaction with others in individuals living with dementia.

Communication Outlet

communication outlet
At some point, persons with dementia may have trouble communicating with others around them. This can be VERY frustrating which can cause a person to withdraw.

Spending time with a pet helps ill individuals to have a communication outlet.

Pets normally communicate on a deeper level that individuals with dementia can appreciate and understand.

Improves Physical Health

Among the benefits of pet therapy and dementia management is that having a pet can ENHANCE an individual’s physical health especially cardiovascular health.

This has been shown through lower cholesterol and lowered blood pressure.

Robotic Animals

robotic animals in pet therapy for dementia
At times, it may not be feasible for an older person with dementia to own a pet or have one visit them from time to time.

This does not mean that the affected person should be denied the perks that come with pet therapy. Thanks to advancements in technology, robotic pets can be a great alternative.

Robotics therapy first emerged in the early 2000s.

Over the years, its POPULARITY continues growing as many production companies jump ship. For example, Hasbro has a line of robotic cats known as Joy For All Companion Pets.

These offer affordable pet therapy solutions to those in need.

The robotic pets purr, roll, over, blink, and offer a calming effect on people who have dementia.

Note: We also have a full article on the topic of social robots and advanced dementia.

A Selection of Robotic Pets Available on Amazon

ProductFeaturesAvailable on Amazon
Interactive Companion Pets for DementiaJOY FOR ALL - Orange Tabby Cat - Interactive Companion Pets - Realistic & LifelikeComfort & companionship
Cat-like movements & sounds
Award winning
Built in sensors
Designed for seniors
Interactive Companion Pets Robot CatChongker Interactive Companion Pets Robot Cat Lifelike with Voice Command & Rich Animation Interaction Lifelike Realistic Stuffed Animals Cat Plush (Robotic Cat)Voice commanded
Built in sensors
180 day warranty
Companionship & fun
Designed for seniors
Weighted Stuffed CatChongker 3LB Weighted Stuffed Cat Animal Realistic Plush Cat Handmade Companionship Customer 5 STAR reviews
Designed for hugs
Realistic weight
Man made
High quality materials
Robot Pets for AdultsCute Robot Pets for Adults, Your Perfect Interactive Companion at HomeMany emotions
Many interactions
Evolving & adapting
Comfort Therapy Doll for Alzheimer's African AmericanComfort Therapy Doll for Alzheimer's African American5 STAR customer reviews
Portion of proceeds donated
Weighted cloth body
Interactive Companion Pets for Dementia PatientsOY FOR ALL - Freckled Pup - Brown and White Soft-Touch Coat - Realistic and Lifelike Interactive Companion Pets10 puppy options to choose
Realistic sounds & motions
Lifelike touch
Built in sensors

Closing Thoughts – Pet Therapy and Dementia

A majority of studies on the benefits of pet therapy and dementia management were conducted in care facilities.

However, even people with dementia living at home can also enjoy the same benefits.

This may imply that more work is still necessary in terms of caring, feeding, and grooming the pet but the benefits are well worth it.

Especially with respect to the use of animal-assisted therapy for the ENHANCEMENT of cognitive functions in individuals with the progressive illness.

Reduce Risk Of Dementia (11 Tips)

reduce the risk of dementia

We found numerous different approaches to how you can reduce risk of dementia.

Unfortunately, many start acting when it is way TOO LATE.

However, one of the reasons is also the fact that we keep too many things for ourselves instead of sharing them with our loved ones.

If you feel like something is happening with you, you notice a change in your thinking, your mind, whatever, talk about out it to your partner, family or friends.

Sometimes, we happened to be ashamed or embarrassed to talk about particular topics. But you should not be. Who knows, the other person might be experiencing the same situation, too.

Imagine HOW supportive you would be of each other. After all, we are all here to help one another, and an honest conversation is a great start.

Today, we will look at some of the things and activities that HELP reduce the risk of dementia.

For whatever reason, we frequently find ourselves in a loop of doing the wrong thing over and over again.

When doing the wrong thing for too long, things like dementia and Alzheimer’s can happen.

Watch after yourself.

Steps To Reduce Risk Of Dementia

Obvious but often overlooked.

1. Being Physically Active

reduce the risk of dementia
Dementia is a group of symptoms that contribute to the slow and continuing DECLINE of the brain hence affecting its abilities.

Its symptoms include short-term memory, confusion, problems with speech and thinking speed affecting someone’s ability to do their daily activities.

Fortunately, there are several ways to reduce the risk of dementia. One of them is being physically active.

Engaging in physical activity is good for the heart, weight control, as well as overall wellbeing.

Lack of exercise is reportedly responsible for a particular risk percentage of this condition.

Therefore, it’s less likely for people who don’t exercise to maintain higher cognition levels compared to those who take part in physical activities regularly.

2. Eating Healthy

eating healthy to reduce the risk of dementia
Another way of reducing the risk of developing dementia is by eating a balanced diet.

Maintaining a healthy diet and weight doesn’t only reduce the chance of risks of this illness, but it also minimizes risks of other conditions too like cancer, diabetes, stroke, and heart-related diseases as well as obesity.

The brain needs a consistent supply of nutrients present in our food to enable it to function to its full capacity and remain healthy.

Therefore, what we eat affects how the brain works. Eating sugar-laded foods and those with high levels of saturated fats can raise our cholesterol levels.

The MOST EVIDENT effect is often weight gain increasing heart disease risk and other health conditions associated with dementia.

3. Don’t Smoke

dont smoke to reduce the risk of dementia
Not smoking or kicking the habit can also reduce the risk of dementia. Cigarette smoking can be detrimental to heart health.

The chemicals in tobacco tend to trigger inflammation and the brain’s vascular changes putting one at a higher risk of getting dementia.

It harms blood circulation in the body, including the brain, heart, and lung blood vessels and these free radicals can lead to cell damage, possibly contributing to the development of this disease.

This would lead to increased cognitive impairment and cardiovascular risk factors associated with dementia.

Even though NOT EVERY smoker will get dementia, quitting the habit is thought to minimize the risk.

4. Cutting Down on Alcohol Consumption

cutting down on alcohol consumption
Long-term and excessive alcohol consumption leads to impaired cognitive function as well as neurological damage depleting the body’s thiamine, causing a type of dementia known as Alcohol-related dementia (ARD).

This form of dementia deteriorates the intellectual function even though memory may not be precisely affected but may arise with other dementia forms resulting in several symptoms.

These SYMPTOMS INCLUDE muscle jerks, extreme confusion, unsteadiness, nausea, vomiting and lack of ability to move one’s eyes.

People with this form of dementia that affects the brain’s frontal lobes often display a loss of planning and a lack of inhibition.

Additionally, their brain’s vascular system changes and increased hemorrhage risk.

5. Taking Part In Mentally Stimulating Activities

taking part in mentally stimulating activities
Some studies have linked mentally stimulating activities by reducing the risk of dementia. Others too, have linked spending MORE TIME studying to lowering the risks.

Engaging in mentally stimulating activities that one enjoys in a social setup increases the chances of successful cognitive training.

Although it’s not crystal clear which activities are more beneficial, it’s advisable that one engages in WHAT THEY LOVE. That could be reading, playing an instrument or even tackling crosswords.

This way, one’s brain is kept active, improving and maintaining their mental wellbeing as it also helps boosts one’s spirits while socializing with others.

Good thing is, one can strengthen their brain at any age, whether through leisure activities or workplace achievement.

6. Treating Depression

treating depression
The correlation between depression and dementia risk is significant. This is because depression is a high-risk factor for dementia since it significantly increases the chances of the illness.

Earlier-life depression is associated with causing changes in the brain that make it susceptible to vascular dementia as well as Alzheimer’s disease many years later.

Even though depression is NOT a CAUSE of this condition, it also has a certain percentage risk responsible for it.

Despite the causal relationship between the risk of dementia and depression has not been established, it is good to treat early-life depression to minimize the chances of developing dementia

7. Hearing Loss

hearing loss
The association between hearing impairment and dementia onset is impartially new. Hearing loss may cause more stress to an already weak brain regarding the possible changes that eventually occur.

It may also cause the persons with dementia to retreat into isolation, leaving them depressed, dependent and lonely as they withdraw from crowds or their usual social activities.

It is still unknown how hearing loss relates to cognitive FAILURE and dementia, but it is said to contribute to different specific cognitive abilities such as processing speed, visuospatial ability, executive function, and memory.

Although old age could contribute to this relationship, a hearing loss too could play a role in developing dementia.

8. Controlling Blood Pressure Levels

controlling blood pressure levels
Uncontrolled high levels of blood pressure are bound to create complications by damaging and narrowing the brain’s blood vessels. Eventually, this increases the chances of the blood vessels becoming blocked or even bursting.

When this occurs, cells in the brain may be impaired due to a lack of an insufficient supply of oxygen and nutrients in the blood.

This damage, therefore, can cause vascular dementia affecting one’s memory and thinking skills.

Moreover, diabetes also associates with cognitive dysfunction progression. This possibly will INTENSIFY the risk of getting dementia.

Hence, controlling someone’s blood pressure and observing their lifestyle may save them from this condition.

9. Maintaining Social Contact

maintaining social contact
Frequent social contact is yet another way of reducing risk of dementia. This includes visiting friends, going out of comfort zones and also engaging in group activities.

Unlike loneliness, which may increase the risk of the illness, socializing does the complete opposite.

Social isolation is a breeding ground for depression. It also contributes to a higher risk of developing other conditions like heart disease and hypertension.

People who ACTIVELY take part in social activities can also lessen the progression to dementia compared to those who isolate themselves once they develop the condition.

10. Meditation

reduce the risk of dementia with meditation
Reportedly, deep concentration and relaxation can lead to new brain cell growth, preventing the shrinking of the brain that is linked to Alzheimer’s.

Several studies have shown that “quieting” your mind is of paramount importance when it comes to reducing dementia risk.

People who meditate and take part in yoga sessions have MINIMAL brain atrophy compared to those who don’t. This is because meditation increases the brain’s protective tissue that helps us feel less worried and minimizes the effects of the cortisol hormone.

It also helps fight negative thinking.

Cortisol is also associated with health problems related to lack of enough sleep. On top of that, it escalates the risk of having dementia.

The waste-draining system is highly active when asleep, which in turn clears the beta-amyloid levels in the brain.

11. Quality Sleep/Rest

quality sleep and rest
While there might not be any clear evidence of whether or not sleep and dementia have something in COMMON, make sure you get enough rest every day.

That would be, on average, at least eight hours.

Keep in mind, there was a small study done that does somewhat support the idea that quality sleep CAN DECREASE the development of dementia. In short, the less REM sleep, the higher the chance of dementia.

To learn more about this subject, we published an in-depth article that shares all the information necessary about the connection between sleep and dementia.

Horse Therapy for Dementia (Is It Healing?)

horse therapy for dementia

It was a really pleasing experiencing witnessing horse therapy for dementia on several occasions.

Researchers are looking into whether this alternative therapy offers a healing hand to individuals with dementia for some time.

Sadly, to date, there is still no approved cure for dementia.

While looking for ways to treat or prevent dementia, professionals work with various methods to improve the quality of life for individuals with the illness.

One of the therapies that are gaining momentum for helping persons with dementia is horse therapy.

What is horse therapy? What does it involve? Does the therapy offer healing?

Read on to uncover answers to these questions and more.

Benefits of Horse Therapy for Dementia

benefits of horse therapy for dementia
Persons with dementia can get various benefits from horse therapy and some of them may include:

Stress Relief and Relaxation

Many people with dementia find it challenging to relax and let go of daily stressors. Taking care of or riding a horse requires concentration.

When a person is concentrating on the activity at hand, they will probably not be thinking of other factors that may be causing anxiety and stress.

Participants may NOT EVEN realize that they are letting go of their worries. When the session is over, a person may feel better and enjoy more clarity.

Improved Physical Health

When an individual participates in horseback riding, they will use muscles that they may not use in other contexts strengthening the muscles.

The activity also helps to build skills like balance, strength, and dexterity all of which are crucial for riding a horse. It can also be helpful for spine strength and mobility.

Horse riding is also rewarding when it comes to burning calories. Being an outdoor activity, the therapy offers fresh air and sunshine which are great for physical strength.

As a person starts to experience the physical benefits, it can also help them start to feel better emotionally and mentally.

Boosts Independence

While professionals in horse care often accompany participants undergoing horse therapy for dementia, this activity can help boost a person’s independence and self-esteem.

A single person can groom, feed, and ride a horse when they are comfortable with the task.

This gives individuals time alone with the horse and their thoughts perfect for persons looking for a quiet activity.

Completing tasks related to horse therapy also gives people a feeling of self-sufficiency and independence. Interacting with the horses also helps a person to feel needed.

Caring for a living being is a good way of making a person feel like they are CONTRIBUTING something worthwhile to the world.

Learning Something New

While it may be strange for a person with dementia to learn a new skill, it is important to take any chance that may help create connections in the brain.

People DO NOT NEED to have any experience on a farm or with horses to benefit from the therapy.

The hands-on learning exercises horse therapy offer helps to stimulate the brain more than watching a game show or working on a crossword puzzle.

What Makes Horses Ideal Candidates for this Dementia Therapy

what makes horses ideal candidates for this therapy
Paula Hertel co-founder of Connected Horse a human and animal interaction program explains that something special happens when people visit a horse barn.

They become more aware of the new smells, sounds, and horses as the animals welcome them to their space.

Horses have certain characteristics that make them IDEAL for this type of therapy and some of them include:

Unbiased and Non-judgmental

Horses will only react to a person’s emotions and behavior.

The animals are not biased by the individual’s past mistakes, abilities, or physical appearance, amongst others.

Horses will also NOT complain when a person asks the same question over and over.

This is an aspect that is critical to therapy because it helps increase self-confidence and self-esteem.

Mirroring and Feedback

Horses are keen observers thanks to their nature as herd or prey animals which makes them sensitive and hyper-vigilant.

It implies that their feedback is offered more consistently and earlier than when it comes from human therapists.

Horses also have an innate tendency to MIRROR a person’s physical movements, behavior, and emotions which helps participants become more aware of themselves.

An equine specialist can translate this type of feedback and the group can also analyze it.

Healing Power of Horses for Persons with Dementia (Studies)

studies on the healing power of horses for persons with dementia
There are a few studies that have been conducted on the perks of horse therapy for dementia and the most notable ones include:

Connected Horse and Stanford University

A pilot study was conducted by Connected Horse and Stanford University. This sought to help persons learn how to manage early-stage dementia through a series of workshops.

The professionals recruited persons living with mild cognitive impairment or dementia and their caregivers.

The participants joined a workshop that included activities like leading and grooming horses, awareness practices, and discussion groups.

Researchers carried out standardized tests before and after the workshops in a bid to measure the effects of the workshop on participants’ quality of sleep, stress levels, and ability to communicate and relate to others.

Initial results of the study revealed that participants scored HIGHER for better sleep quality, social support, and decreased depression and anxiety.

The results of the study will be used to come up with more resources to develop training materials, secure more equisetin sites, and get funding for developing new programs.

Ohio State University

Multiple departments at the Ohio State University collaborated to conduct a study on the therapeutic effects of spending time with horses on adults who have Alzheimer’s dementia.

The University collaborated with an adult daycare center and an equine therapy center.

They found that persons with Alzheimer’s the most common cause of dementia were able to feed, groom, and walk horses safely under supervision.

The researchers reported that spending time with horses helps to ease symptoms of Alzheimer’s dementia without using drugs.

The experts also stated that the experience enhanced mood made participants more open to caring, and led to fewer instances of negative behavior.

Church Residences Centre for Senior Health

At the daycare center, A national Church Residences Centre for Senior Health in Columbus recruited 16 residents who had Alzheimer’s (7 men and 9 women).

Eight of the clients once a week took a bus trip to a farm where they visited with horses under the supervision of their caretakers.

The residents bathed and groomed the horses, fed them grass and walked them.

The researchers reported that the persons with dementia enjoyed their time on the farm because they talked to the horses, laughed, and smiled more.

Horses work great to make a dementia patient happy.

This was seen even in the persons who usually acted withdrawn as they became fully engaged in the exercise. The therapy also BOOSTED physical activity.

Even though the clients had physical limitations, they were inspired to push boundaries once presented with the horses. The clients grew more physically active after visiting the farm.

The small study is from the journal Anthrozoos.

Horse Therapy for Dementia Closing Thoughts

While more research is still necessary regarding horse therapy for dementia, current results are promising.

This makes the therapy something worth looking into for people living with dementia and their caregivers.

Bonus: What is Horse Therapy?

what is horse therapy
Horse therapy also known as Equine therapy or Equine-assisted therapy is a treatment option that includes an equine environment and/or equine activities to promote physical, emotional, and occupational growth in people suffering from various medical issues.

These medical problems include a host of mental health issues. Like anxiety, ADD, autism, dementia, cerebral palsy, depression, traumatic brain injuries, genetic syndromes, behavioral issues.

Equine-assisted therapy is IN USE in mental and medical health fields by major countries.

This type of therapy can help individuals build communication, self-efficiency, confidence, trust, social skills, impulse control, perspective, and learn boundaries, etc.

The Anxiety Treatment Centre reckons that it is easy for ill persons to create a connection with horses because the domestic animals have similar behaviors with humans like responsive and social behaviors.

Horses can also mirror the feelings of a rider or handler. The large and intimidating appearance of a horse forces people to gain trust around them.

Horse Therapy Activities

horse therapy activities
There are different activities involved in horse therapy for dementia that offer therapeutic benefits and they include:

  • Horse riding
  • Stroking
  • Feeding the horse
  • Haltering and leading
  • Grooming

In some sessions, depending on the participants’ abilities and mood, a person may not even touch the horse.

Professional therapists often lead the sessions and set goals for their clients.

This can be something SIMPLE like putting a halter on the horse or leading the horse to a designated area.

The client will do their best to complete the task. And then discuss the ideas, thought-process, and problem-solving that were used to finish the task.

The discussions help IMPROVE language skills. Listening to the therapist helps enhance a person’s ability to listen and follow directions.

Can Dementia Medication make Dementia Worse? (Yes & No)

can dementia medication make dementia worse

Many people with dementia, their caregivers, and loved ones often ask us if dementia medication make dementia worse?

In short: Yes and no.

Before answering this question, it is important to note that medicine for dementia does not cure the progressive illness.

They are usually prescribed to help with symptoms that affect memory, thinking, behavior, and mood. The medication may also help some people and not others.

Additionally, in some cases, the medicine may only work for about 6-12 months.

It is not possible to buy dementia medicine because they are only available on prescription.

Only a doctor who specializes in treating dementia may prescribe the drugs an affected individual should take.

Read on to learn more about dementia medicines and whether or not they can make the illness worse below.

Medication for Dementia

medication for dementia
4 common pharmaceutical drugs usually prescribed for dementia include:

  • Donepezil
  • Memantine
  • Galantamine
  • Rivastigmine

The above come in various brand names and are available as liquids, tablets, patches, or tablets that dissolve in water.

Furthermore, there are other medication options that people with dementia may take such as:

  • Antidepressants
  • Aspirin
  • Sleeping tablets
  • Antipsychotic medicine or tranquilisers

How Medication for Dementia Works

how medication for dementia works
Pharmaceutical drugs given to persons living with dementia normally work by increasing the levels of various chemicals in the brain.

Medications like rivastigmine, donepezil, and galantamine increase the levels of a chemical known as acetylcholine.

This chemical is usually low in persons who have dementia and the medicine can treat some of the symptoms that affect memory and thinking in some people with the neurodegenerative illness.

NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) recommends that the 3 medications are more suitable for persons who have mild or moderate dementia.

Common side effects of these medications may include muscle cramps, feeling sick, diarrhea, headache, and tiredness.

Memantine is another pharmaceutical drug that doctors prescribe for persons with dementia. It helps to reduce the amount of glutamate.

Experts believe that it slows down damage to brain cells affected by dementia.

Some side-effects of taking this medicine include confusion dizziness, headache, vomiting, weight gain, constipation, aggression, depression, nausea, cough, and body pains.

Impact of Medication on Persons with Dementia

impact of medication on persons with dementia
When looking for answers to the query can dementia medication make dementia worse, it is important to note that different people react differently to the medicines.

Weil Institute for Neurosciences states that generally there are 3 ways people with dementia may react to the pharmaceutical drugs:

1. At times, the medicine may lead to improvement in cognition, memory, or behavior.

2. For some individuals, the medication may not make any notable difference. However, behavior, cognition, and memory may not decline or worsen as fast without the medicines.

3. Sometimes the medication may not work at all and it can seem like a person becomes worse and suffers various side effects.

How To take Medications for Dementia

how to take medications for dementia
Dementia doctors normally recommend that a person starts taking medication in small doses before increasing it after some time to target the required dose.

This is very important when it comes to answering the question can dementia make dementia worse.

Depending on how an individual reacts to the medication, a doctor can either stop the medication entirely or go ahead with the treatment option.

Keep in mind that many people will develop some side effects when they start taking dementia medication.

For most, these usually go away after some time.

While most people can take dementia medicine without a problem, it’s necessary to observe individuals who have a history of medical problems.

For instance, persons with severe kidney or liver issues may not be in a position to take the medicines or if they are helpful may need to take lower doses.

Medication that can Make Dementia Worse

medication that can make dementia worse
Some medicines used to improve dementia seek to increase choline levels in the brain. This is a chemical that the brain cells use to communicate with each other.

Some types of pharmaceutical drugs are “anti-cholinergic” which means that they decrease choline levels.

Such medication can make dementia worse and can also increase agitation and confusion levels.

They may also cause difficulties while urinating, constipation, and a dry mouth.

Examples of such medication include:

  • Benadryl: This is mostly found in over-the-counter sleeping and allergy pills as well as cough syrups.
  • Tropsium/Sanctura: these aid persons who need to urinate frequently but they can also cause agitation and confusion.
  • Bladder pills like Detrol/Tolterodine.
  • Atropine/AtroPen: Caution needs to be exercised when using eye drops in dementia.
  • Glycopyrrolate/Robinul: it dries secretions and also causes agitation and confusion
  • Diphenoxylate and Lomotil/atropine: it is often prescribed for persons who have diarrhea. It may be okay when used one or two times. Frequent use, however, may cause problems for persons who have dementia.
  • Amitriptyline: In the past, this was used to treat depression. Today, it is prescribed to treat irritable bowel conditions and neuropathy.
  • Steroids: medicines that are often used to reduce various types of inflammation can cause pose health problems for individuals with dementia. An example is Prednisone that which can cause insomnia, agitation, and confusion.

Closing Thoughts

There is no standard (yes or no) answer to the question can dementia medication make dementia worse.

This is because some people can have positive results after taking the medicine while others will experience worsening symptoms.

Research, however, continues in search of new medications that can help with dementia.

Cooking Therapy for Dementia (Benefit?)

cooking therapy for dementia

After close investigation, we saw that cooking therapy for dementia is one of the therapies that people living with dementia benefit from.

QUITE significantly.

Some experts describe cooking therapy as a therapeutic technique that uses cooking, arts, gastronomy, and people’s personal, familial, and cultural relationships with food to address psychological and emotional issues.

It is also a popular alternative therapy with great benefits.

An article in Psychology Today described cooking therapy as one of the ways to simultaneously nourish the mind and feed the soul.

How Does Cooking Help Dementia?

Cook Book for Dementia
MIND DIET Cookbook for Beginners: Tasty and Nutritious Recipes for Optimal Brain Health (The Alzheimer’s Prevention Food Guide)

Also known as kitchen or culinary therapy, cooking therapy is also considered a form of SELF-CARE according to Dr. Axe.

This is because it helps people save money, relieve anxiety, and the result is a product that an individual can enjoy on their own or share with others.

Professionals agree that cooking can support an individual’s mental and physical health in multiple ways.

This is why this type of therapy can be beneficial to a person with dementia. It is, however, important to make sure that seniors engaging in cooking therapy do so safely depending on their current abilities.

Persons with dementia SHOULD ONLY take part in tasks that do not put them at risk of injury.

Some of the appropriate kitchen activities are:

  • Washing vegetables
  • Rolling dough
  • Setting the table
  • Mixing ingredients
  • Cleaning dishes
  • Making simple meals like sandwiches and fruit salads

Avoid letting the elderly handle sharp cutlery, hot stoves, and other risky actions.

It is best to gauge what an individual is CAPABLE of handling even for the most willing and able seniors.

Always match the tasks assigned to the functional level of the individual with the neurodegenerative illness.

With this in mind, let’s look into some of the ways individuals with the progressive illness can benefit from cooking therapy.

Benefits of Cooking Therapy for Dementia

Reduces Stress

reducing stress
A 2018 review revealed that cooking can help enhance mood and reduce anxiety symptoms by giving participants a sense of accomplishment, control, and providing for themselves or others who will end up eating the meal.

Dementia often brings negative emotions and feelings caused by frustration and confusion. Cooking can HELP get rid of such by reducing some of the behavioral symptoms that people with dementia showcase.

For instance, a SIMPLE act of kneading dough or washing potatoes can reduce irritability and depression.

This is because a person is presented with a task that they can accomplish and enjoy which aids in relieving stress.

Encourages Physical Activity

encourages physical activity
One of the perks that cooking therapy for dementia presents is encouraging individuals with the illness to get on their feet as they prepare ingredients and clean up afterward.

Physically, cooking requires some movements in fingers, shoulders, neck, elbow, neck, wrists, and good overall balance. An EXCELLENT activity for the entire body if you will.

Muscle strength is also required in upper limbs for chopping, cutting, and mixing.

While it may not be an intense workout, cooking sessions allow people to enjoy a fun and creative exercise that is relatively active.

Promotes Healthy Eating

Most people who engage in cooking therapy end up being mindful of what they put in their mouths.

promotes healthy eating

High-quality diets are crucial for maintaining brain health. Dr. Andrew McCulloch wrote that nutrition should become a mainstream daily component of MENTAL HEALTH care.

Including foods that are rich in various nutrients including legumes, dark leafy greens, berries, and oily fish, etc. has been linked with better outcomes for persons battling mood disorders.

Research also links nutrients like amino acids, omega-3 fats, magnesium, B vitamins, zinc, and iron to improved brain health.

Triggers Happy Memories

Mind Diet For Dementia Recipe Book
MIND DIET: Eating for a Sharp Mind and Healthy Brain (The Alzheimer’s Prevention Food Guide & Cookbook)

Cooking makes people FEEL nostalgic especially during family gatherings, over the holidays, and other traditional events.

Persons with dementia can reminisce on good times they had in the past cooking or sharing meals with loved ones.

Time Magazine researchers suggest that humans associate food with happy memories. The smell is another powerful element that triggers nostalgia.

Note that the part of the brain that processes smell is the EMOTIONAL center of the organ.

This implies that individuals are biologically hardwired to evoke emotions through smell.

Susan Whitborne professor of psychological and brain sciences at the University of Massachusetts explains that food memories involve all five senses reason they are more sensory than other types of memories.

Cooking therapy can also enhance brain stimulation through various actions that the senior participants in.

For starters, a person needs to concentrate on the activity a move that gives the brain a workout.

Encourages Self-Expression and Social Bonding

cooking therapy for dementia
One of the benefits of cooking therapy for dementia is when seniors cook in a group setting.

They have a good time working with peers and other staff members where they end up enjoying the support and help of others.

It is quite EASY to bond over a delicious meal or snack.

The process of creating these foods offers the elderly an opportunity to have fun and provides a social outlet for self-expression.

Closing Remarks – Cooking Therapy for Dementia

Many professionals agree that cooking therapy for dementia is quite beneficial for various stages of the illness.

This has even led to the introduction of therapeutic kitchens in many long-term care facilities.

Not only do residents use the kitchens but the staff and family members as well.

Dementia and Aggression (Complete Guide)

dementia and aggression

Since dementia and aggression, both physical and verbal, are very common in patients, we will look at all the possible causes and steps to soothe the situation.

People with dementia might sometimes become verbally or physically aggressive because of the damage that is happening in the brain.

In fact, it can be pretty common, as we experienced it 100s of times.

It is a normal part of the illness, and it can happen to seniors who have NEVER been violent all their lives.

Aggressive outbursts can be difficult and scary for ill persons as well as those around them.

Persons with the illness may start to curse, scowl, scream, hit, bite, grab, throw things, or push.

Family members and friends may not know how to react accordingly when their loved one with dementia starts to behave aggressively.

Below we discuss the possible causes of aggression and how to best approach it in people with dementia.

Causes of Aggression

causes of aggression
With most dementia cases, affected persons who start to showcase aggressive behaviors normally do so because they cannot communicate their needs.

They may lash out for various reasons like:

  • Pain or discomfort
  • Hunger or thirst
  • Stress or depression
  • Soiled clothes or diapers
  • Lack of enough sleep or rest
  • Feelings of loss
  • Constipation
  • Excessive noise in the room
  • Sudden changes in routine, well-known places, or people
  • Feeling lonely
  • Medicine interactions
  • The person may misunderstand the good intentions of caregivers
  • Being pushed by others to complete certain tasks like going out to socialize or remembering events or loved ones, etc.

Practical Tips for Dealing with Aggression

practical tips for dealing with aggression
Caregivers may not always understand why dementia patients behave the way they do.

It is, however, important to familiarize yourself with some of the aggressive scenarios that may arise during the illness so that you prepare well for such.

Below we look at some of the best ways to respond when a person with dementia experiences anger outbursts.

Remain Calm

remain calm
It’s natural to want to fight back or argue when you encounter an aggressive person.

Avoid the urge to do this and, instead, step back, and take several deep breaths before reacting. This will give the person with dementia some space and time.

Although it may not be easy, you should always try to remain as calm as possible when dealing with an individual who is being aggressive for one reason or the other.

You can leave the room if this is what it takes to feel calmer.

If the individual with the illness is showing signs of physical violence, try your best not to show any fear, anxiety, or alarm because this may increase the person’s agitation levels.

It may be difficult, especially in a situation where you feel threatened. If you genuinely feel like the person is a threat, get away from them and immediately call for help.

Unless it is necessary, avoid trying to restrain the person because this escalates the problem further.

Remember to speak calmly, stay positive, and keep reassuring the angry person.

Try and Identify what is Triggering Aggression Episodes

try and identify what is triggering aggression episodes
Another way to help an individual with dementia when they are being aggressive is to think about what was happening before the flare-ups.

Frustration, fear, or pain are among likely triggers. For instance, an individual may start yelling at an empty chair or commanding people in the room to leave.

When you look around, you may notice that the room is getting darker; and shadows may start showing up in corners so that it feels like there are other persons in the room.

To help calm the weak person, you can turn on the lights so that the shadows disappear.

If the aggression ceases, you will know to turn on the lights in a room before it becomes shadowy.

Rule out Pain

dementia and aggression
When a person who has dementia is feeling pain and they cannot voice this out, they are bound to become aggressive.

Before coming up with other solutions, it is important to try and rule out eliminate pain as the cause of aggression.

Some of the things that may cause the individual pain include:

  • Infections like UTI’s or chest infections
  • Existing medical conditions like arthritis
  • Constipation
  • Bruises, cuts, or other injuries
  • Sitting, sleeping, or moving around in an uncomfortable position
  • Earache, toothache, or issues with dentures
  • Finger or toenails that need trimming, amongst others

You can take the person for eyesight and hearing testing so that they can get hearing aids or glasses if obligatory.

Validate the Person’s Feelings

validate the persons feelings
When dealing with dementia and aggression, you must also try to put yourself in the shoes of the person exhibiting aggression.

Study their body language and try to imagine what they are trying to express or how they are currently feeling.

For example, if a person starts to remove their clothes, they may be feeling too hot, itchy, may need to use the washroom, or they may be feeling like the clothes are too tight.

If you can identify the issue that is bringing out the aggressive behavior, you can solve it with greater ease.

Worth noting is that the individual with dementia will most probably respond to facial expression, body language, and the tone of your voice rather than the words you choose to use.

Smile, use eye contact, or a reassuring touch to show compassion and pass your message. Remember that these behaviors are not personal.

Use Distractions

use distractions

During anger outbursts, you can try and distract a person so that they can focus on something else.

Soothing or classical music is one of the things that work well for people with dementia and aggression.

If the person is not feeling this type of music, you can always play their favorite tunes.

Singing along to some music as you complete some tasks like brushing teeth or dressing can make these easier.

Other than music, you can also shift focus to another enjoyable activity. This primarily works if a previous or current event is the cause of the agitation.

Give the person with dementia a moment to vent before you introduce a new activity so that you do not surprise them and make the problem worse.

Moreover, exercise can also be part of the distraction. Working out will not only help to reduce aggression, but it will improve sleep as well.

This can also offer social interaction opportunities providing caregivers a much-needed break.

Calm the Environment

calm the environment

At times, the room that a person is in may be the cause of aggression. A high percentage of people with dementia are usually sensitive to their environment.

This is especially if there is too much noise that is coming from other people, TV, radio, or other sources.

If the individual cannot get out of the room for one reason or another, you can politely ask the others to tone down.

Switching off devices that are making noise can also help to calm the situation.

Other steps that you can take to create a relaxing environment include carefully selected decorations.

Do this by contrasting the colors of floors and walls, and making sure that you cover mirrors when they are not in use.

It also helps to improve lighting and ensuring that the things that a person needs are within reach.

Be Realistic with Expectations

be realistic with expectations
When you are trying to cope with dementia and aggression, it is also important to be realistic about expectations.

Note that some calming techniques can work within no time while others take a while before bringing forth any positive results.

Depending on an individual some may not even work.

Learn to practice patience and understand that the person is not aggressive because they want to.

Always ask for help when you feel that you are stuck so that you remain in the right frame of mind when looking after the person with dementia.

Ensure Safety

ensure safety
You will notice that sometimes the person with dementia just needs a few minutes on their own to calm down or even forget that they are angry.

This means that you should leave them alone in the room so that they can regain balance.

Before you leave a person on their own, it is essential to ensure that the room is safe.

There are a couple of things you can do to enhance safety such as getting rid of clutter so that a person can move around with ease.

Marking doors or leaving them open can also help reduce confusion inside the house.

Experts also suggest that adding keepsakes or photos can help to evoke positive memories creating a pleasant environment.

If you feel like the individual with dementia is not safe at home, it may be time to consider a care facility.

All you need to do is carefully look for one that will take care of the needs of your loved ones so that they live a comfortable life despite dementia.

Dementia and Aggression Closing Thoughts

It is advisable to always look for the early warning signs of dementia and aggression.

This is because it is easier to deal with the cause before extreme behavior problems start.

Never try and ignore this issue because it will only become worse. When the aggression becomes overwhelming, consulting a doctor might be the only solution.

The medic will perform a medical exam to identify the cause of aggression.

When the need is, the professional may prescribe medication that can help to prevent or reduce aggression.

Can Alzheimer’s Medication Make You Worse?

can alzheimer's medication make you worse

One of the questions that seniors ask us regularly is: Can Alzheimer’s medication make you worse?

Even though there is still no cure for the progressive illness, some dementia specialists may prescribe Alzheimer’s medication that may help to manage symptoms.

But can the condition get worse?

Let’s explore the effects of AD medication below and whether or not you should be taking it.

The Effect of Alzheimer’s Medication

the effect of alzheimer's medication
Different scenarios play out when a person with AD takes Alzheimer’s medicine. For some, the medication offers relief to some symptoms an individual is facing.

A percentage of individuals will not get any results after taking the medicine.

Some people can become worse after they start taking the medication.

This goes to show that it is not possible to say yes or no when answering the query can Alzheimer’s medication make you worse.

David Perlmutter a professional neurologist is of the point of view that medication should be a last resort when taking care of an individual with AD.

He states that most drugs prescribed to treat AD are associated with more aggressive cognitive function decline.

David urges physicians to change their care approach.

He reports that he has dealt with the progressive illness for years having lost his dad to the disease and has not yet identified any medication that helps.

Should you Take Alzheimer’s Medication

should you take alzheimer's medication
The decision on whether or not to take Alzheimer’s medicine is not a simple one. Several factors come into play.

Examples of things a person should consider before taking the medication include:

  • Understanding that the medication does not work for everyone and even if it works it may not make a significant difference.
  • Finding out what’s the medication for and the results to expect after taking the medicine.
  • Cost implications: AD medicine may be quite costly. A person can try taking them for some time to see if they are helpful and worth the investment.
  • Side Effects: most drugs that people with Alzheimer’s take have a variety of side effects that an individual may have to deal with. Make sure you discuss this with your doctor to get expert advice on whether or not to take the medication.
  • Drug Interaction: if the person with AD is taking other types of medication, it is important to discuss this with the physician to know whether it is okay to take additional medication.
  • How the medication will be taken: Affected persons and their caregivers should also consider how the medication should be taken to ensure they do it in the right way. Always take medication as directed by a professional physician to be on the safe side. Record any changes that happen after taking the meds and discuss this immediately with the doctor to know the next course of action.


When it comes to Alzheimer’s medication it is important to note that they do not work the same for everyone.

The medication will also not cure the illness or stop its progressions.

Experts also state that the effects of pharmaceutical drugs normally wear off over time.

It is one of the reasons it is not easy to answer the query can Alzheimer’s medication make you worse?

For some people, the medication will help while in others it can end up making things worse.

It is, therefore, ideal to take Alzheimer’s medication for as long as they prove useful.

In cases where medication does not work, affected persons, physicians, and caregivers should explore other ways of managing symptoms and improving quality of life.

Research is, however, ONGOING to identify or develop more effective drugs that can help people with Alzheimer’s disease.

Bonus: 2 Types of Alzheimer’s Medication

2 types of alzheimers medication
Mayo Clinic reports that there are two types of pharmaceutical drugs approved by the FDA that might help manage the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease (AD).

1. Cholinesterase inhibitors

These help boost the amount of acetylcholine in the nerve cells by preventing its breakdown in the brain.

One of the hallmarks of an Alzheimer’s brain is decreasing levels of acetylcholine a chemical messenger that is important for memory, alertness, judgment, and thought.

Because cholinesterase inhibitors cannot stop the destruction of nerve cells or reverse AD, their effect ends up dwindling as the illness continues to progress and brain cells are forced to produce less acetylcholine.

Common side effects include diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea. It normally helps to start with a low dose and gradually move to a higher/recommended dose.

Examples of cholinesterase inhibitors include:

1. Galantamine: It is primarily i use to treat mild or moderate Alzheimer’s. Affected individuals can either take a pill once every day or an extended-release capsule two times a day.

2. Rivastigmine: Approved for mild to moderate AD and it comes as a pill. A skin patch is also available for persons who have severe Alzheimer’s.

3. Donepezil: Taken as a single pill daily, this is used to treat all Alzheimer’s stages.

2. Memantine

Can Alzheimer’s medication make you worse? Memantine
This is mostly in use to treat moderate to severe Alzheimer’s.

It helps to regulate glutamate activity a messenger chemical that is involved in multiple brain functions including memory and learning.

It is available as a syrup or pill. Common side effects include agitation, confusion, dizziness, and headache.

As Alzheimer’s disease continues to progress your symptoms may change which leads to adjustments in care plans.

Your doctor will conduct an ongoing review to decide whether or not to include AD medication in the care plan.

Note that there is also different medication that doctors prescribe to help deal with emotional and behavioral symptoms that persons with AD may have.

These include agitation, lack of sleep, appetite issues, confusion, paranoia, and many others.

The medicines can include antipsychotics, anti-depressants, sleep aids, and anti-anxiety medication, etc.

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