Why see a Dementia Neurologist?

Dementia Neurologist for diagnosis

The first step for most people who have growing concerns about the changes in the memory and behaviour of their loved one is to see their family GP, but as they are not specialists in neurology, the next step is usually a referral to a Dementia Neurologist.

This stage, can be quite an emotional time for the family as it feels that so much is at stake. Some query the necessity of seeing a Dementia doctor at all, but to do so can bring you the answers you crave and the support you will need.

Release in your mind, who your loved one used to be and accept who they are today… J Rusknak Phd

Neurologist for dementia evaluation

Neurologist for dementia evaluationA Neurologist is a doctor who specializes in disorders of the brain, diseases of the spinal cord and the body’s nervous system. They are highly trained doctors who know how to spot the subtle changes in the brain that could be causing memory problems.

It is important to take this next step so that you can get a firm diagnosis and can fully understand the options available for your loved one.

Although research into dementia is moving at a swift pace, there is no cure – as yet – but there are a variety of treatments that can reduce the symptoms. This is important because it will help your loved one maintain the best possible quality of life.

As Carol Thatcher, daughter of ex UK Prime minister, Margaret explained –

‘ Sufferers look and act the same, but beneath the familiar exterior, something quite different is going on. They are in another world and you cannot enter it’…                    Carol Thatcher

It is for this reason, that it can be so beneficial to spend time with a dementia neurologist who can give you a firm diagnosis, guide you with choosing the best treatment plan and also be there to answer your questions so that you can learn and understand more about this increasingly common brain disorder.

The World Health Organisation has stated that 55 million people worldwide have dementia and that Alzheimer disease may contribute to 60-70% of cases.

Dementia neurologist expert.

Dementia assessmentAlthough all neurologists can evaluate and diagnose your loved one, if you can be referred to a Dementia neurology, this is even better.

These doctors (who are usually Consultants) specialise in dementia and are really interested in all the latest trials taking place and the new treatments being offered. As well as conducting the necessary tests to confirm the medical condition, the neurology expert can then give some good advice and guide you to make the right decision regarding your loved one.

Importantly, they also fully understand that the diagnosis of dementia will affect all the family and the different emotions involved.

Find a dementia specialist

Dementia care neurologistIf you can arrange through your GP to see a dementia specialist, this will be a huge advantage. These specialists are well aware of what is currently being learnt about dementia.

Scientists have uncovered so much valuable information recently, and because of their specialisation in this field, the dementia specialist will be keeping abreast of all the latest research and the many medical trials.

This is truly invaluable, and something that the family doctor cannot possibly do. General neurologists can certainly perform the medical evaluation, but they too are not ideal as they do not specialise in dementia.

If you have a friend with dementia, it is well worth asking their partner to recommend their dementia neurology expert so that you can make a little research and ask your GP to refer your loved one to them.

Dementia Neurologist for diagnosis

Dementia NeurologistIt is crucial to have someone experienced to conduct the tests on your loved one. The dementia Consultants are experienced in a variety of different cognitive disorders. The most common, is dementia which is a group of diseases that affect memory, thinking skills and ability to complete normal daily tasks.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type, but other disorders include frontotemporal dementia, vascular dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies, Parkinson’s, mild cognitive impairment and primary progressive aphasia – amongst others.

 

Dementia assessment

The dementia neurologist will spend time talking with you to establish a detailed history of your loved one’s problems – the more in-depth with information you can provide, the better. A number of cognitive functions change in a person with dementia over a period of time and the specialist will be asking you about your loved one’s –

  • The importance of using a dementia neurologistMemory
  • Language
  • Numerical skills
  • Thinking and problem solving
  • Visual perception
  • Any personality changes

Although this may seem very daunting, this appointment can be made much easier if you make notes for each of the above headings to take with you to the appointment.

Sometimes, there may be enough material provided, but usually the dementia specialist will want to conduct some brain scans, a lumbar puncture or neuropsychological assessment so they can make an accurate diagnosis.

Although these all sound quite scary, each of these will be explained to you fully in advance and a follow up appointment will be arranged. It also comes as a relief to the various challenges and changes explained to you by an experienced doctor, who very understanding and will answer all your questions.

Dementia care neurologist

Following the diagnosis, the dementia neurologist may well want to see your loved one on a regular basis. Alternatively, you will be put in contact with the dementia specialist nurse. Although this is an extremely difficult time for you and your family, you will find that there is a great deal of support.

You will be given plenty of information, practical advice and local support groups to contact either by your dementia specialist or their nurse.

In addition,  it is a comforting feeling to know that they are at the end of the telephone, should you have any queries. As the disease progresses, you will also be given practical support too, which is invaluable.

Dementia Neurologist – Final Thoughts

Caring for a loved one with dementia is certainly challenging and comes with a feeling of loss, but how you approach these changes in your loved one makes all the difference and it is essential to work with an experienced dementia care neurologist who specialises in this brain disorder as this really can make all the difference.

Specialist Dementia Care Homes [Quick Guide]

Specialist Dementia Care Homes

Specialist dementia care homes are designed for people with dementia. The buildings are usually purpose built and extremely well-designed. The members of staff are highly trained and experienced and will do their best to ensure that your loved one is kept as comfortable as possible and efforts will be made to try and reduce their symptoms wherever possible. The most reassuring point is that safety is top priority in all specialist dementia care homes.

Specialist Dementia Care Homes

Care Homes for Dementia PatientsSpecialist dementia care homes can either be residential or day-care centres. They are cleverly designed to create a warm, friendly environment that will quickly become familiar to your loved one.

The aim is for the dementia patient to be able to enjoy the best level of independence and for you, their carer, to feel happy and confident that your loved one is being really well cared for.

Although you will naturally have very mixed emotions when it comes to the time that your loved one goes to the home – even if it is for a short time to familiarise them with it, in case they need to stay there if you fall ill or are hospitalised – it will be easier for you if you know more about specialist dementia care homes.

When your loved one first goes to the home

Specialist Dementia Care Homes When a person with dementia first goes to the home, the members of staff are keen to spend time with their carer. This is so they can understand the dementia patient’s life story. By doing so they can create a treatment plan that is individually tailored to their needs.

Another big bonus for them is that they can use the information they have gleaned about the dementia patient to start conversation with them and encourage reminiscing as many dementia patients still have some long term memory.

How are dementia care facilities designed?

Specialist dementia care homes are usually purpose built facilities. They provide excellent care in comfortable surroundings. These facilities are very carefully designed so that their dementia residents find them welcoming and familiar as this reduces stress and anxiety.

  • The clever use of color

Dementia Care FacilitiesWhen memory care homes are being designed, the use of colour plays a key role. Different colours are used for different areas, walls and doors to help the dementia residents to move around more easily and confidently. This reduces their level of anxiety.

Different areas are clearly defined and there is usually excellent signage. These all help the residents find their way around. The furniture used throughout is well designed, comfortable and dementia-friendly.

  • Carefully designed lighting

With safety as the top consideration, lighting in Alzheimer care residences is given careful consideration. The lighting system is usually very sophisticated as many dementia patients suffer ‘late day confusion’ as dusk falls and can become confused, agitated and even aggressive.

Scientists have found that if the level of lighting is changed very gradually there is no negative impact on dementia patients. Yet the lighting will have slowly become subdued to help signal that bedtime is approaching.

  • Maintaining individuality

Each dementia patient has their own dedicated room. You will be encouraged to personalise it for your loved one. All homes have a name plate by the door and often a photograph, but some specialist dementia care homes also have a display cabinet that can be personalised with photographs, postcards, certain colours and cute cuddly toys – whatever familiar belongings your loved one would like to see.

Gardens that stimulate the senses

Gardens for Dementia PatientsAs well as having easy access within the home, it is important that dementia residents can freely move around the garden.

The garden is carefully designed to be flat with broad paths and plenty of seating areas. Many of the gardens are sensory gardens with plants, shrubs and herbs that stimulate the senses with their colours, fragrances and touch.

In some homes, there are sections in the garden where dementia patients can be helped to grow their own flowers and vegetables. This gives them much satisfaction and sense of achievement.

  • Security to keep dementia patients safe

Because of the nature of dementia, whilst it is important that residents feel free to move around the home and gardens as they wish, the main doors and gates leading outside the centre are securely controlled – usually using a security code keypad to open them.

Specialist dementia care homes- staff

Dementia Care Home StaffThe key component in a specialist dementia care home is its staff. Staff members take a keen interest in all the patients and know each patient’s likes and dislikes, family history and recent experiences.

They have been specially trained to cope with the unpredictable nature of dementia and many receive ongoing training to keep abreast of changes in care and the results of the latest research.

Dementia nurses understand the importance of clear sensitive communication with the dementia patient and their family.

They encourage dementia patients with a variety of daytime activities and have experience in handling difficult situations and restoring the calm. They also closely monitor any changes in dementia patients and will openly discuss these with the patient’s family.

Other types of senior living for dementia patients

While there are a number of specialist dementia care homes, many care homes do not fully specialise in the care of dementia patients but have a dementia care unit which is a separate section, floor or wing in the home.

This wing cares for residents with advanced dementia or Alzheimer’s and who are frail or have severe symptoms. The nurses in these units are also highly trained in dementia care.

If you care for your loved one at home, it can be difficult to accept that their dementia is worsening and that they need a higher level of care than you give.

You may well be feeling guilty that you have such thoughts, but if you speak to any specialist dementia nurse they will reassure you that there does come a time when no matter how much time and effort you put in, it becomes increasingly difficult – and frankly exhausting- to try and meet the increasing needs of your loved one.

Specialist Dementia Care Homes – Final Thoughts

Find the right care home is not always easy and can take time. Whether it is a specialist dementia care home or one with a dedicated section for dementia patients, it is important to make several visits and ask many questions to ensure it is going to be suitable.

Easy Meals for Dementia Patients (Guide)

Easy Meals for Dementia Patients 2

A nourishing balanced diet is important for keeping the body strong and healthy. This is definitely the case for dementia patients as poor nutrition can lead to various medical problems. These include lack of lower body strength making movement a challenge, weight loss and sometimes, an increase in behavioural symptoms. For older carers, trying to prepare tempting meals for loved ones isn’t always easy, so it makes sense to prepare easy meals for dementia patients that are tasty and simple to make…

‘Our food should be our medicine and our medicine should be our food’ Hippocrates

What are the basic guidelines for meals for dementia patients?

Giving your loved one a balanced diet can really boost their health. There has been plenty of research into nutrition for dementia patients and it has been found to make all the difference to the dementia patients’ level of fitness and body strength, which in turn helps maintain their quality of life.

As well as a well-balanced diet, it is important that dementia patients exercise as much as possible. Dementia patients usually find eating small, regular meals and snacks is easier than tackling large plates of food.

Sometimes differences in visual and spatial abilities can make it difficult for them to recognise certain foods. Food needs to be tempting with different colours, textures, and smells. Sometimes medication can affect your loved one’s appetite.

This can either be a change in medication, or in the dosage, and it is best to keep a close eye on things and if the problem hasn’t resolved after a week- ten days, it is good to speak with your GP.

If you find that your loved one is having problems swallowing, or is changing their eating habits, it is well worth seeking professional guidance.

A good balanced diet for dementia patients includes:

balanced diet for dementia patients

  • Plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Whole grains and pulses
  • Lean meats and fresh fish
  • Low-fat dairy products

Keeping your loved one hydrated is very important. Small drinks should be offered throughout the day – water and sugar-free drinks are ideal. A couple of cups of coffee and tea- without added sugar – are fine too.

Types of food to limit:

Types of food not good for dementia patients

  • Foods with high levels of saturated fats such as fatty cuts of meat and butter as these are bad for the heart.
  • Reduce sugar intake. Refined sugars are full of calories and low in vitamins and minerals. Try sweetening foods with a little honey or unsweetened fruit juice.
  • Salt is added to many foods and is certainly in all ready meals as it is known to enhance the flavour. Try to add no salt to your cooking and use herbs and spices to enhance flavours.

 

Dementia-friendly mealtimes

tempting easy meals for dementia patientsAs well as offering smaller meals, it is important to check that your loved one feels comfortable at the table and that their chair is at the correct height and distance from the table. Before you serve the meal, check it is the correct temperature and not too hot

Make sure there are no distractions such as the television and keep the table setting simple but attractive. Dementia patients can find it tricky to distinguish the food on patterned plates and tablemats.

It is far better to opt for a plain coloured placeman/ tablecloth and white plate and do not lay their place setting with too many pieces of cutlery. Never try to hurry the meal.

  • Eating is a social occasion so try to share a meal together

Easy-to-make recipes for dementia patients

It is best to choose recipes that use just a few ingredients and are quick to complete. If it is possible, involve your loved one in the meal preparation such as cleaning vegetables or measuring amounts.

Always opt for fresh seasonal produce where possible and think about serving raw foods. Carrot, celery and cucumber matchsticks are perfect with a dip such as Tzatziki, hummus or guacamole. Many dementia patients find it easier to eat finger foods and it is the ideal way to serve small portions.

10 nutritious and easy meals for individuals with dementia:

Simple recipes for dementia patients

  • A bowl of salad with some prawns, pieces of salmon, smoked trout, cold chopped chicken or chipolata tossed in.
  • Pasta and prawns – cook prawns with a little garlic and mixed herbs for a few minutes and serve on a bed of warm pasta shapes.
  • Omelette – eggs are nutritious and quick and adding some pre-cooked or leftover vegetables to an omelette makes a tasty meal.
  • Scrambled egg tastes extra good if mushroom, grated cheese, chopped ham or sweetcorn are added.
  • Jacket potato with melted cheese or pesto.
  • Easy baked salmon – place a piece on salmon on a greased piece of tin foil. Top with a chopped tomato and half a chopped onion. Bake at 200°C for 20 minutes.
  • A small individual pizza topped with sliced mushrooms, ham and cheese (muffins can be used as the base and topped with tomato paste, grated cheese, olives etc. and cooked at 200°C for 5 minutes).
  • A mini stir fry made with chopped aubergine (eggplant), chopped courgette, half a chopped onion and chopped green pepper, cooked in a little olive oil.
  • Fresh fruit salad with a spoonful of plain yoghurt on top.
  • Apple sauce with a sprinkle of cinnamon and topped with ice cream makes a tasty pudding.

There are plenty of websites for inspiration for dementia-friendly meal ideas:-
https://www.aplaceformom.com/caregiver-resources/articles/easy-recipes-for-senior-nutrition

https://livingmaples.com/mag/soft-foods-for-alzheimers-and-dementia-patients/

Smoothie – one of the best recipes for dementia patients

If your loved one finds eating some foods a little tricky and prefers soft foods, making a colourful nutritious smoothie can be the perfect answer as the smoothie looks colourful and is easy to drink.

The smoothie can be made using fresh seasonal fruits or you can keep a bag of frozen fruits in the freezer, with no need to defrost them!

Pop a chopped banana, handful of berries (fresh or frozen) a pot of natural yoghurt and two tablespoons of milk into an electric blender and whizz until smooth.

If your loved one likes a slightly sweeter tasting smoothie, add a spoonful of smooth peanut butter.

Making a smoothie is a very tempting easy meal for dementia patients!

Easy Meals for Dementia Patients – Final Thoughts

It is important that you prepare hassle-free meals for the elderly with dementia as there is a chance that your chosen dish may not be a big hit with your loved one. This is not as disappointing as if you had spent more time preparing it.

If your loved one doesn’t want to eat a particular dish, leave it a little while, enhance the flavour with some herbs or spices if you can and try again….

 

Day Trips for Elderly with Dementia

Day Trips for Elderly with Dementia

Enjoying a day out with your loved one can be beneficial for you both, but will require some good planning in advance. Your choice of where you spend your day out is also important and of course there will be many other aspects to consider if you are going to enjoy a trouble free day. In this article we cover all things concerning day trips for elderly with dementia.

Day Trips for Elderly with Dementia

Here we bring you tips and suggestions for senior-friendly day trips for memory impaired individuals:

A place to reminisce

Day Trips for dementia patientsPlanning a visit to a place where you used to holiday, take your children or was your favourite place to walk brings many bonuses as a day’s outing for seniors with dementia.

Your loved one will really enjoy sharing memories which will bring happiness. Plus it will evoke in them a warm feeling of accomplishment.

Visit a museum

Museums are a good choice for Alzheimer’s day trips as they can often trigger a memory or renew an interest that your loved one once had.

Visiting a museum that was a favourite in the past can be particularly rewarding.

Join in a group activity

dementia-friendly excursionsSocialising is very important and a carefully chosen group activity can be a good choice for elderly dementia-friendly excursions.

As well as enjoying the activity, your loved one will benefit from the sense of community and friendship. This can help to combat feelings of loneliness and can lift the spirits as they bond with new people.

An alternative idea is to go to a sports event together. This can again trigger memories and also encourage your loved one to socialise.

Enjoy the outdoors

Whether you plan to visit your local beach, public gardens or your favourite park or woods, being outdoors will definitely be a positive experience for your loved one’s physical and mental well-being.

A gentle walk is good exercise and being out in good weather gives the body a boost of vitamin D.  All great for joints and bones!

Enjoying time outdoors together will make your loved one feel free and more independent. This in turn can reduce stress and improve their mood. A day in the open air will also help them to sleep better.

day trips suited to people with dementiaIf your loved one enjoys gardening, time spent outdoors working together in the garden can reap many benefits and your loved one will feel a sense of achievement.

Meet some animals

Farms and petting zoos offer fun dementia-safe day trips for the elderly as most thrive on the opportunity of watching and stroking the animals and it has been proven that making a connection with animals encourages conversation and is a good mood booster for those with dementia.

Check your chosen destination is dementia-friendly

day trips for people with dementiaOnce you have decided on your day trip it is important to check that it is going to be suitable for your loved ones in terms of ease of getting around, distances involved and whether there are numerous stairs etc. to negotiate.

Does the venue have suitable parking and easily accessible walkways?

Is there plenty of seating and good toilet facilities?

What about cafés and seating under cover?

If your loved one is in a wheelchair, it is essential to check that the place you have chosen is definitely wheelchair friendly.

More and more places are becoming dementia aware and have been thoughtfully designed with clear signage. Many also have dementia- friendly staff who have been specifically trained in dementia awareness. Some places organise special events for people with dementia.

The essential 10-point dementia day trip preparation list:

easy day trips for dementia patients1. Choose somewhere for your day trip that is relatively close to home. A long journey can be stressful for people with dementia.

2. A few days before your planned visit start to keep an eye on the weather reports. Having said that, a light shower or snowfall can be fun and will stimulate your loved one’s senses and prove a real mood booster.

3. Decide when you are going to make the trip to avoid large crowds and queues if possible. It is usually best to avoid popular beaches, museums, zoos and petting farms during school holidays too.

4. Consider the possible noise levels of your chosen destination. This could prove very unsettling for your loved one.

5. Book tickets in advance and set money aside ready for any extras.

6. Plan your route if you are driving or the easiest journey if using public transport and buy your tickets in advance

7. Make a clothing list for your loved one and always add a raincoat just in case! If the weather is cooler and your loved one is in a wheelchair, take a rug to keep their legs warm. .

8. At the bottom of the list add any medications you will need to take plus any panty pads, baby wipes etc.

9. Consider the food and drink you will need. Plenty of small cups of water are ideal and finger foods work well.

10. Make sure your smartphone is well charged – not only in case you have any problems, but because you will want to take plenty of photographs.

Day Trips for Elderly with Dementia- Final Thoughts

With all this careful planning, you should both have a really good day out and in the days afterwards it will be fun to create a scrapbook of the day together. That way you can look at it regularly to relive the memories and plan your next day trip for a second scrapbook….

Granny Mary Thinks Differently: Children’s Book About Dementia

granny mary thinks differently children's book about dementia

Granny Mary Thinks Differently is an eBook for everyone in the family facing dementia.

Dementia is a syndrome that does not have a cure yet. Unfortunately, it affects every family member, including children.

It happens very commonly in families that we completely forsake explaining dementia to children. It is a challenging term for a child to understand. That’s why we need to teach them about the condition their grandparent is facing.

Very often, the child and the grandparent are best friends. However, when dementia occurs, their relationship can change drastically.

Sometimes, kids think it’s their fault, which can even lead to depression.

Explaining Dementia to Children and Young People

With lovely and educational children’s book, Granny Mary Thinks Differently, you can now educate your child about dementia conveniently.

Through carefully picked words and engaging illustrations, your child will understand that dementia is a disease.

They will learn that they are not guilty of a negative reaction from grandparents. The book will also help them stop having the feeling that grandparents no longer like them.

Tell your child when you feel sad, angry, tired, or in a bad mood because of your grandparent’s dementia.

Emphasize that the child is not to blame for your feelings and that he or she has done nothing wrong.

Talk to Children and Young People About Dementia

Additionally, allow the child to talk about their fears, concerns, and emotions related to the changes they observe and experience in grandparents or the family.

It is important that the child does not experience feelings of guilt. You should clearly explain to your child that no one in the family is to blame for the illness – dementia.

At the same time, we need to assure the child that he will not get dementia and that he should not worry about his future or his parents’ future (dementia is rarely hereditary).

If you teach a child about the disease (especially about the noticeable signs that he will easily notice), it will not affect him.

This especially applies to situations when the grandparent forgets his name, repeatedly asks the same question, will no longer want to read them a fairy tale, or even becomes angry at them.

The child will know that this is an expression of the disease. Not the fact that the grandparent no longer likes him/her.

We can also direct the child to preventive action like reading, exercise, quality sleep, learning, healthy eating.

In short, explaining what is good for the brain and how he/she should take care of his/her body to be healthy for as long as possible.

Knowledge is a cure (for the whole family) when we face dementia.

The more information and knowledge a child has about dementia, the easier it will be to find themselves in a new position. When you do not have the answers to all the questions, your child has asked you, find information and solutions together.

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Granny Mary Thinks Differently

We discover dementia and get to know it through the childhood curiosity of Granny Mary’s granddaughter, Anna.

granny mary thinks differently

Hidden in the story are important questions about age, illness, family, friendship, and love, which gives us the strength and courage to cope with the changes that dementia brings to the family.

There are currently about 50 million people who have dementia globally.

The number keeps increasing by almost 10 million each year.

Thus, the topic is rapidly becoming more and more relevant, both on a daily basis and in children’s literature. Changes that come with the disease touch all family members.

Furthermore, everyone accepts the effects of dementia differently, so studying the condition carefully is very important, especially in children.

Children’s world

The book is dedicated to all families, but especially to the grandchildren of grandparents who think differently.

The heartiness and patience of Anna, the granddaughter of grandmother Mary, will invite you to the children’s world, which is often ignored and overlooked when we face illness – dementia – in the family.

By talking to a child in an understandable and acceptable way, we make them aware and influence the recognition and understanding of dementia in society.

Dear Grandma, Grandpa

Even if you forget everything, you will not be forgotten. Let this children’s book on dementia be a display of love that gives us the strength and courage to face change.

Dementia changes a person, but it does not change the family and the love that embraces it.

Dear Granddaughter, Grandson

Let the book be a consolation to you when the days are hard and when you don’t understand your grandmother or grandfather due to their challenging condition.

Remember that the illness needs love. Your help and warmth are always valuable. Ask any question you may have and seek knowledge.

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Reviews & Comments

Teepa Snow, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA

This is a very helpful resource designed to help children better understand why someone they love is changing and seems so different. Petra Boh has done an excellent job of comparing the normal role and relationship of a special Grandma with what might be a new possibility after significant symptoms have started to appear. The illustrator, Andreja Karba, has done terrific work creating a mix of scenes that have action in them, while also highlighting some of the objects or emotions that could be identified by children. This is so needed by families around the world who are coping with these very real situations.” – Teepa Snow, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA, Founder of Positive Approach to Care®

Cameron J. Camp, Ph.D., Director of Research and Development, Center for Applied Research in Dementia

In Granny Mary Thinks Differently we are given the opportunity to see a woman with dementia through the eyes of her granddaughter, Anna. A strong message throughout is the power of love to maintain our humanity. As her granddaughter sees changes in her grandmother, the little girl also learns how to adapt to these changes so that she can maintain their positive and loving relationship. This is a powerful and important lesson to learn, for Anna and for all of us.

Zvezdan Pirtosek, M.D., Ph.D.

Dementia – a word that a doctor wrote in grandmother’s medical record. In front of little Anna, curious and playful, a new world has unfolded, in which her beloved grandmother thinks and behaves differently than before. In “Granny Mary Thinks Differently,” Anna reveals her wonder and her sadness, but also her acceptance, understanding, and finally, the realization that touches us deeply – especially when expressed by a child. The body can become numb, the mind tiresome, and the memory fades – but not the friendship and love that Anna will always feel for her grandmother.

Laura Herman, Elder and Dementia Care Professional

My kids are ages 7 and 8, and I was curious as to how they’d react to Petra Boh’s new children’s book about dementia: ‘Granny Mary Thinks Differently.’ We sat down to read it together. They were immediately drawn in by Andreja Karba’s sweet and colorful illustrations. They delighted in small details, like the framed rabbit portraits that appear throughout the pages. Both kids enjoyed reading about how 7-year-old Anna and Granny Mary spent their time together. They instantly related, and imagined sharing these activities with their own grandmother.”

“They found themselves very engaged in the story. As Granny Mary started to decline, my 8 year old boy choked up, commenting that he didn’t know what he’d do if his Memaw started feeling and acting like that. He especially appreciated the pages about how Anna and the doggie could help Granny Mary feel better when she was having a hard time.”

Teodora Ghiur, Cognitive Neuroscience

Informative, engaging, and accurate, this e-book is an excellent educational tool for all children. Unfortunately, memory degeneration has become a part of life for many of us growing and living with grandparents. Using story-telling and strong visual imagery, this short e-book explains topics that are often painful to put into words, like Alzheimer’s and Dementia in an easy-to-understand and dynamic format. Written into a compassionate tone of voice, this e-book offers excellent science-based information in a language accessible to the little ones.

Jana Mali, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Faculty of Social Work

The main narrator of the story is seven-year-old Anna, who describes how she experiences Granny Mary’s changes due to dementia. This children’s book is a good example of how parents can approach the world of dementia with their child by reading Anna’s story. A child’s perspective on understanding dementia; a world that is different from ours because thinking happens in a special way.

It’s important that Granny Mary remains the main character of the story from beginning to end, as the perspective of people with dementia is still too often overlooked in everyday practices. The recording of the story through the view of a person with dementia represents a great signpost for a change in the relationship we have with people experiencing dementia. We expect changes in a better understanding of dementia, most from the young and middle generation representatives, who will also be the most likely to pick up the book. Let’s take the time to share this children’s book with our kids and consider the next steps for a healthy relationship with people with dementia.”

10+ Best Incontinence Products for Dementia Patients

incontinence products for dementia patients

There are numerous incontinence products for dementia patients, and each has dozens of variations.

Different combinations of products may be right for different individuals, and a person’s needs may evolve over time.

Incontinence Products for Dementia

ProductFeaturesAvailable on Amazon
Prevail Air Plus Adult DiaperPrevail Air plus Daily BriefSoft & breathable
Ultimate absorbency
Pack of 4 (18 count)
Night & day
Skin smart
Omni-odor guard
Wellness BriefWellness Superio Series BriefsBrand: Unique WellnessFully Absorb up to 2.6L
Wide absorbent core
Resealable landing zone for easy adjustment
White with a nylon based crinkle-free plastic
Value for money
Stays dry for 8+ hours
Award winner/ Featured on Discovery Channel
One Piece Waterproof Snap-on Brief Re-usableOne Piece Waterproof Snap-on Diaper Cover BriefBrand: SalkLightweight
Softness of cloth
100% waterproof
Polyester/urethane outer
Brushed polyester inner
Super-absorbent pad
3-ply inner layer
Waterproof outer layer
Washable
SOSecure Containment Swim BriefSOSecure Containment Swim BriefBrand: Discovery Trekking Outfitters Discreet Swimming Undergarment
Durable Polyurethane Fabric
Fleece Lining
Hook and Loop Closure (Easy)
Elastic Waist & Legs
Machine Washable
Latex Free
Prevail Overnight Bladder Control PadsPrevail Overnight Bladder Control PadsBrand: First QualityFor Women
Dri-Fit cotton enhanced
QUICK WICK Layer and cotton
Odor Guard
Depend Men GuardsDepend Men GuardsBrand: Kimberly ClarkAdhesive strips to hold guard in place
Individually wrapped
Discreet- pocket-sized pouch
Easy carrying and disposal
Contoured design
Cup-shaped protection for men
One size fits most
Medline Incontinence Bed PadsMedline Incontinence Bed PadsUnderpads
50 count
36"X36"
Heavy absorbancy
Polypropylene backing (protects against leakage & resists melting)
Ideal for overnight use
Inspire Washable and Reusable Incontinence Chair or Bed PadsInspire Washable and Reusable Incontinence Chair or Bed PadsWashable/reusable
Solves incontinence problems
Safely absorbs & lock in liquids
Soft & comfortable
Non-irritating
Attends Bariatric 2X-Large UnderwearBariatric 2X-Large UnderwearBrand: AttendsImproved side panels (better comfort & fit)
Acquisition layer
Super absorbent polymer
Tear-away sides (easy removal)
Looks & feels like regular underwear
Bag of 12
Depend Mens Maximum Absorbency UnderwearDepend Mens Maximum Absorbency UnderwearBrand: Kimberly ClarkOutstanding protection
Improved underwear-like fit
Brief-like leg opening
Heavy incontinence
Soft, quiet, breathable material
Conforms to the body
Washable Absorbent Urine Incontinence Underwear for WomenAIRCUTE Washable Absorbent Urine Incontinence Underwear for Women6 layers
High waist
Absorbent & leakproof
Washable
Breathable
Comfortable
Prevail Adult WashclothPrevail Adult WashclothBrand: First Quality
Super strong & soft fabric (12" x 8")
Stay-open & easy-close lid
Press 'N' Pull lid
Super strong soft fabric
Aloe & lanolin
Lid closes tightly

Don’t call them diapers

Many people refer to incontinent products for dementia as “diapers,” but the term has a strong connotation with infants.

It is generally considered to be disrespectful, infantilizing and tactless.

It should not typically be used when referring to adult absorbent undergarments (unless the person themselves prefers that term).

Words like “pads” or “briefs” would be an appropriate way to refer to these products.

Products designed to be worn inside, or instead, of underpants

Incontinence Products for Dementia Patients

  • Pantiliners – a very thin pad that adheres to underpants for small leaks
  • Disposable pads – adhere to underpants, but are thicker and more absorbent than pantiliners
  • Pull up briefs / disposable underpants
  • Washable pads, liners or absorbent underpants
  • Reusable vinyl waterproof underpants covers
  • Wraparound tab briefs – similar to a traditional “diaper” design
  • Extended wear – Products designed for extended use keep urine away from the skin
  • Brief liners – designed specifically for use in a brief to boost absorbance or easily remove if damp
  • Insert – for use with special underpants designed with a pocket to hold a disposable or washable pad insert
  • Condom catheter or body-worn urinal – Designed to fit over a penis and collect urine in a bag

Products to protect furniture from wetness

  • Waterproof bed sheets
  • Washable bed pads
  • Disposable bed pads
  • Waterproof mattress pads

Other supportive equipment

  • Raised toilet seat with handles – this can make it easier to get on or off the toilet
  • Portable bedside commode
  • Urinal

When the Person with Dementia won’t Keep a Brief On

when the person with dementia won't keep a brief on
If someone with dementia keeps removing their brief, pay attention for clues to determine a likely reason.

Is the problem specific to briefs or are they pulling at other clothing too? Does it happen mainly at night or after bathing? Understanding the reason behind it is essential for finding a solution.

Common reasons for removing clothing or briefs can include:

  • Feeling too warm
  • Ill-fitting brief or pants
  • Wet, damp or soiled brief

Is the person new to wearing briefs (or wearing a new type or brand)?

Briefs can be bulky or uncomfortable, especially when they feel unfamiliar.

Start with the smallest, thinnest or most comfortable product that will meet their needs. This might mean changing them more frequently.

is the person with dementia new to wearing briefs

Be sure to minimize incontinence with a toileting plan.

Try a different style

It is worth experimenting with various brands and styles to find something more comfortable or successful.

Look for patterns

1. Do they remove the brief mainly at night? Try going without the brief if possible, using several bed pads for absorbance instead. It may help to tuck an additional bed pad up between the person’s legs.

2. Does it happen mainly when the brief is damp? It may help to use a brief liner, or alternate style of brief that pulls wetness away from the skin. Allow skin to dry fully after a shower or wash-up to ensure there is no lingering feeling of dampness.

3. Are they removing the brief when they need the restroom? It may be a non-verbal sign that the person needs to use the restroom.

4. Do they seem to have bored or restless hands? Giving them something interesting for their hands, such as super soft fuzzy gloves, or a dementia fidget lap blanket with lots of interesting textures and items for their hands to explore.

Is this a sudden change?

A sudden change probably indicates a problem other than the brief itself.

Look for signs that the person might be uncomfortable, especially in the abdomen or perineal area.

Possible conditions that could cause discomfort include:

Special clothing for special situations

Although there are specialty clothing designed to prevent people from removing their own clothing – such as a jumpsuit with a zipper in the back – there are ethical concerns about restricting normal access to one’s body. They can cause distress in some cases.

In many places, these types of clothing are considered restraints.

What if the Person with Dementia won’t Change their Brief when Needed?

what if the person with dementia won't change their brief when needed
There are many potential complications of wearing a soiled brief too long. It greatly increases one’s risk of urinary tract infections, rashes, skin breakdown, and pressure sores.

Unfortunately, it’s an all-too-frequent problem in dementia care.

There are dozens, if not hundreds, of unique reasons – and as many potential solutions. A few examples include:

Set them up for independence

Keep pads and supplies easily within sight and reach from the toilet.

Catch them when they’re in the restroom

Getting them onto the toilet in the first place is often the biggest challenge. Once they’re there, it can be much easier to access the brief to change it.

Avoid “taking” anything without giving something in return

Hand them a clean pad to hold while you swap out the soiled one for another.

Spare their pride

Present non-rinse soap, wetness barrier cream, or other appropriate skincare products as a medical treatment, for example, to “prevent infection” or to “protect your skin.”

Not only are these statements true, they also take the focus off of their incontinence, which can spare their pride – and their need to fight for it.

Incontinence can be Embarrassing, Inconvenient and Challenging

Successfully managing it can make a big difference in terms of quality of life, physical health and mental well-

7 Best Essential Oils for Dementia

essential oils for dementia

While researchers and other medical experts continue to search for a cure for dementia, there are some essential oils for dementia that can help improve some of the symptoms that persons with this neurodegenerative disease experience.

The use of essential oil is not a new concept.

For years, people have used these oils to ease symptoms of insomnia, anxiety, and depression.

Because these are some of the symptoms that persons with dementia may get, it implies that essential oils are good for dementia.

Nowadays, persons living with dementia can use the oils for various reasons that may include:

  • Easing anxiety and depression symptoms
  • Improving sleep
  • Enhancing memory
  • Appetite stimulation
  • Improving cognitive function
  • Decreasing agitation
  • Production of endorphins and serotonin that can decrease pain in the brain
  • Stimulate creativity
  • Improving the quality of life

How Essential Oils are Made

how essential oils are made
Essential oils are generally extracted from plants and herbs.

There are two ways this is done.

One of them is through expression which uses mechanical pressure to force the oil out. The other is distillation where the steam releases compounds from the plants.

A cooling system is then used on the vapor as the stream converts back to the water. The oil will float on top when the mixture cools.

Best Essential Oils for Dementia

Let’s check out some of the essential oils that are best suited for persons with dementia.

Lavender

lavender
Lavender is known to balance strong emotions and it also produces a calming effect. It can be used for persons who have anger issues, irritability, or depression.

In some cases, it can also help people with insomnia.

Rosemary

rosemary
Rosemary belongs to the group of essential oils for dementia that is worth mentioning. It is considered an uplifting oil that stimulates both the body and mind.

Some say that it can also improve mood and cognitive performance.

A study by Lorraine Oliver and Mark Moss reported some persuasive evidence that exposing people with dementia to rosemary oil improves cognitive performance in both accuracy and speed measures.

Additionally, rosemary is thought to increase appetite, ease constipation, and even relieve depression symptoms

Lemon Balm

lemon balm
A quick market search reveals that lemon oil is among the most costly essential oils. Nonetheless, it is one of the most studied oils, thanks to its effectiveness.

The oil has been shown to help people with insomnia and anxiety to relax and remain calm. It is also known to ease indigestion, and improve memory.

Ginger

Oil made from the ginger root also belongs to the category of essential oils for dementia. It is particularly helpful for individuals suffering from digestion problems.

For generations, the oil has been used to treat constipation, and loss of appetite. Ginger is also known to help people eat well.

Ylang Ylang

ylang ylang
Ylang Ylang oil is great for two major functions. It can help promote good sleep and it can also ease depression symptoms.

In addition to people with dementia, caregivers looking after ill individuals can also use it if they are struggling with a lack of sleep and restlessness.

It is advisable to combine this with lemon oil for maximum benefits.

Bergamot

bergamot
Bergamot oil is a mood-elevating oil that also has a calming effect.

The essential oil helps with several symptoms including stress, agitation, mild depression, insomnia, and anxiety.

Peppermint

It is not possible to discuss essential oils for dementia without mentioning peppermint oil.

It is categorized as an energizer that stimulates the mind as well as calms nerves. Experts advocate for its use in the morning.

Note that there are many other essential oils that can benefit persons with dementia, but the above are the ones that have the most clinical support.

The other oils include oregano oil which is antifungal, anti-parasitic, antibacterial, anti-viral, and antimicrobial.

Sandalwood, frankincense, eucalyptus, thyme, and chamomile are other oils that can help reduce inflammation.

It is also important to note that scent has the potential to activate various emotional and physical responses. Specific aromas can bring back memories that a person might have forgotten.

 

Comparison/Review of Barefut Oils and Rocky Mountain Oils

There are many companies selling essential oils. The 2 companies we have reviewed offer 100% pure organic premium oils. All the oils discussed in this article are sold by both companies.

Barefut Essential OilsRocky Mountain Essential Oils
Company NameBAREFUT ESSENTIAL OILSROCKY MOUNTAIN ESSENTIAL OILS
Selection/RangeAll oils in this article available100 single oils, plus 75 blends. All oils in this article available
Customer Reviews4.9 STARS averageBetween 4 and 5 STARS
Organic100%USDA Certified organic
QualityEvery batch GC/MS Tested & analysed by chemistsProvides GC/MS test results from an independent 3rd party lab
Chemicals & PesticidesChemically freeChemically Free
ExtractionSteam distillation or cold press
Artificial Ingredients, filters and additivesNilNil
Purity100%100%
Guarantee30 days satisfaction money back Guarantee90 days satisfaction money back guarantee
Shipping CostsFree shipping with orders over $25 in USAFree shipping USA
Rewards programYesYes
Packaging & storagePrevents oxidation with nitrogen cap, and cool dark storage. Amber bottles.Amber glass bottles
Delivery Posted day after purchase3-7 business days in USA
PriceAverage/moderate eg Lavender oil $14.00/15mlAverage/high eg Lavender oil $23.95/15ml
BUY BAREFUT OILS HEREBUY ROCKY MOUNTAIN OILS HERE

 

How to Use Essential Oils for Dementia

how to use essential oils for dementia
There are different ways that a person with dementia can get the benefits that come from using the essential oils.

In most cases, the oils are used for aromatherapy where persons inhale the oils or they are used for a massage. Look at some of the most common ways the oils are used.

Massage

Massage combines the therapeutic benefits of touch with the oils. This helps to improve and relax muscle tone as well as improve lymph flow and blood circulation.

Direct Inhalation

For this, a person puts essential oils in a cloth or tissue and inhales through their nose.

Ambient diffusion

This is where you use a dispenser to disperse the oils into the air.

Bath

An individual can opt to use the essential oils in their bathwater. It is one of the best ways to relieve emotional and muscular stress while soothing skin conditions at the same time.

It can be a full bath or foot bath depending on what a person desires.

Body oil

It is where individuals benefit from aromatic treatment through absorption of the skin. The oils in this case are best used after a bath or shower in a bid to deep condition the skin.

Misting

This is another way the essential oils can be dispersed in the air. For this, you will add drops of oil to a mister and vigorously shake to mist the air.

Gargling

At times, an expert may advise a person to gargle the essential oils.

Compress

It is also possible to use essential oils as a compress.

For this, an individual needs to add drops of oil to warm or cold water. Soak a cloth in this water, wring it, and apply the infused cloth on the skin.

Spraying on linens or clothing

Some oils, especially the ones used to promote sleep and relieve stress are best applied to pillowcases or clothes for the best results.

What to Look For When Purchasing Essential Oils?

Ensure you are buying high-quality oils. Essential oils are not regulated by the FDA and have therefore have no quality control guidelines in place. It is up to the buyer to do their own due diligence.

  • Best to buy organic. Ensure the product has a USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) certified organic label.
  • Read the label. The label should include where the plant originates, where the product was made, the Latin name, as well as how the oil was extracted. The label should also include safety data.
  • Jar color: dark blue or amber bottles protects the aromatic and therapeutic properties.
  • Be wary of companies claiming their product can cure Alzheimer disease, dementia, or other diseases. Be cautious.
  • Tightly sealed bottles.
  • Do not buy synthetic oil products. These have none of the health benefits that pure essential oils have.
  • Look for 100% pure essential oils. Pure oils will not be greasy/oily or leave any residue on paper. Pure oils do not have artificial substances in the formulas

Closing Remarks

As much as essential oils for dementia may offer a wide range of benefits, they are not regulated by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration).

For this reason, it is important to consult a professional doctor before using any of the oils to make sure they will be safe and effective.

Cannabis, CBD Oil and Dementia Patients

cbd oil and dementia

When looking into dementia treatment options, one that stands out has got to be CBD oil and dementia.

CBD or Cannabidiol is a compound that comes from the Cannabis plant. This has positive medicinal effects that do not make users feel anxious or “high.”

You should not confuse CBD for Marijuana or the compound Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) that makes people “high.”

CBD oil that we mention here has nothing to do with Marijuana and THC, as there are no components in the oil that will cause the “high” effect.

The most common form of administering cannabidiol is through CBD oil that is mostly found in a dropper bottle or gel cap.

Learn how persons with dementia can benefit from CBD oil below.

How Does CBD Help Persons with Dementia?

how does cbd help persons with dementia
Multiple studies, including one from California’s Salk Institute, report that cannabinoids like CBD can help to get rid of dementia from brain cells.

There are different ways that people with dementia can benefit from the consumption of CBD oil like:

Reduces Inflammation

reduces inflammation
Inflammation is known to increase the negative effects of dementia. It normally happens where the immune cells in the brain fail to clear the disorienting blockages.

Experts agree that inflammation is a major cause of most of dementia symptoms. Using CBD oil takes care of the inflammation issue, ultimately improving the health of the suffering person.

Acts a Neuroprotectant and Brain Stimulant

acts a neuroprotectant and brain stimulant
Anyone who has dementia experiences rapid destruction and decline of brain cells.

CBD has the potential of stimulating brain tissues in a way that can prevent or reverse the development of the adverse effects of dementia.

A study by Carl Group and Tim Karl researchers from Australia in 2011 revealed that CBD could promote the growth and development of cells in the brain in a bid to reduce memory decline and enhance other brain functions.

Reduces Oxygen Build-up

reduces oxygen build up
Individuals with dementia will often experience oxygen build up in their bodies. Dementia releases oxygen as a stress-induced and reactive component of the illness.

As the brain gets more oxygen, essential functions like memory will also decrease.

Loss of memory and other brain deterioration causes increased levels of oxygen in the brain.

In such a scenario, CBD works like an antioxidant that tackles the issues that come about because of oxygen stress.

Using CBD helps to improve brain functions that have been affected by high oxygen levels.

Reduction of Stress and Anxiety

reduction of stress and anxiety
When talking about CBD oil and dementia, many users agree that oil is effective in reducing anxiety and stress.

Risks and Side Effects of CBD

risk and side effects of cbd
No public health problems are associated with the use of organic CBD, according to WHO (World Health Organization). Some users, however, report side effects like nausea, bloating, and diarrhea.

A small percentage of persons with dementia underwent liver problems, which prompted the discontinuation of CBD use. Others also said that they experienced increased terror while taking high CBD doses.

Because the use of CBD oil as a treatment is relatively new, it is best for caregivers as well as the persons with the illness to monitor the outcomes and effects closely.

This can help a person determine whether the CBD oil and dementia route is right for an individual.

Considerations for Taking CBD Oil

considerations for taking cbd oil
Just like any other medication, one has to be careful when it comes to CBD oil and dementia.

Major factors to consider include the weight, height, and age of the weak person as well as the stage and severity of the illness.

Qualified physicians will be in a position to prescribe the correct dosage after taking into account all the necessary considerations.

Other than taking cannabis in oil form, a professional medic might also recommend other forms of administration like edibles and patches.

Is CBD Legal?

is cbd legal
The legality of CBD depends on the plant where it originates from. This is because the Cannabis plant includes both marijuana and hemp.

While you can create CBD from both, CBD oil derived from hemp is what patients with dementia should use.

This is generally legal in more than thirty states. There are still some minor legal issues that exist because of the stigma that surrounds the plant.

Many states approve CBD from hemp because it contains less than 0.3% of THC. This said different states have their laws when it comes to the consumption of CBD.

If you have any concerns when you want to explore the perks of CBD oil and dementia, it is best to do thorough research on the state you are in to know the laws that surround the use of CBD.

Worth noting is that the US food and Drug Administration has not yet approved CBD as a drug for treating dementia.

Bottom Line

While many studies support the fact that CBD oil is excellent for persons with dementia, there is still no hard evidence that cannabis can cannabis oil can prevent, reverse, or stop dementia.

There is still a need for more research as well as clinical trials that will offer more conclusive results.

The future of CBD oil remains bright even though the entire topic of CBD oil and dementia is still in its early stages.

Vitamin D and Dementia – Deficiency Risk?

vitamin D and dementia

Recent studies suggest that there may be a connection between low levels of vitamin D and dementia risk.

Researchers revealed that vitamin D deficiency might play a role in dementia development.

Note that the particular vitamin is essential for good health because it plays a significant role in the prevention of various health conditions like hypertension, multiple sclerosis, and diabetes amongst others.

Vitamin D and the Risk of Dementia

Vitamin D which is a group of secosteroids helps the intestines to absorb zinc, calcium, phosphate, magnesium, and iron.

The vitamin is also important to bone metabolism.

Does Vitamin D Deficiency Enhance Aging Proces?

does vitamin D deficiency enhance aging proces
It is still not clear about the role that vitamin D plays concerning the aging process, cognition, and brain function.

Some studies reveal that the vitamin may be involved in several processes that relate to cognition, but more research needs to be done to understand this relationship better.

Humans mainly absorb vitamin D from sunlight and it also occurs naturally in some foods like different types of fish, cod liver oil, beef liver, orange juice, milk and yogurt that have been fortified with vitamin D.

Statistics indicate about 40-75% of adults suffer from vitamin D deficiency.

Now that you are aware of the importance of the vitamin in the human body, let’s go ahead and learn about the connection between vitamin D and dementia.

Studies Investigating the Link between Dementia and Vitamin D Deficiency

studies investigating the link between dementia and vitamin D deficiency
One of the studies trying to unearth the connection between the deficiency and the neurodegenerative disease was conducted by an international research team.

The experts followed over 1,600 participants for 6 years. All the participants were seniors.

The researchers discovered that elderly persons with severe vitamin D deficiency were two times likely to develop dementia and Alzheimer’s when compared to the seniors who had adequate vitamin D levels.

The persons with a severe deficiency (less than 25nmol/l) recorded a 125% increased dementia risk while the ones who had mild deficiency (between 25-50nmol/l) has a 53% risk.

David Llewellyn who was the lead author from the University of Exeter Medical School explained that the primary aim of conducting the research was to know if there was a connection between low levels of vitamin D and dementia & Alzheimer’s risk.

He said that the results were quite surprising because they found that the association between the diseases and the deficiency was twice as much as the team had projected.

Vitamin D Deficient Individuals Show Cognitive Decline Symptoms

vitamin D deficient individuals show cognitive decline symptoms
Another study confirming the link between vitamin D and dementia had experts observing 858 adults who were above the age of 65. They published their findings in an issue of The Archives of Internal Medicine.

They found that the participants who had low levels of vitamin D in their blood i.e. less than 25 nanomoles for each litre of blood were 60% more likely to show cognitive decline symptoms.

31% were more likely to show a decline in executive function/prioritizing, planning, and organizing than the ones who had enough vitamin D in their blood.

A different study published in JAMA Neurology adds to the evidence that links cognitive decline to low vitamin D levels. The study had 382 participants with an average age of 75.5 years.

Among the group some people were healthy, others had mild cognitive decline, and the rest already had dementia. The research went on for 5 years and every year researchers took blood tests to evaluate the levels of vitamin D present in all the participants.

They found that the group that had dementia had a lower vitamin D average than the other two groups. The experts also conducted cognitive tests in a bid to evaluate semantic memory, episodic memory, executive function, and visual perception.

The results of these tests indicated that group members who had lower vitamin D levels demonstrated a greater decline in both episodic memory and cognitive ability.

This led the authors of the study to believe that there is a link between cognitive decline and vitamin D deficiency.

Can Vitamin D Supplementation Slow Cognitive Decline?

can vitamin D supplementation slow cognitive decline
The researcher, however, noted that the study did not necessarily prove that the two have anything in common. The authors acknowledged that it is still not clear whether vitamin D supplementation can slow down cognitive decline.

UC Davis researchers will be conducting yet another study that will determine whether high doses of vitamin D can help in the prevention of memory loss.

This is after they got a financial boost from the National Institutes of Health to the tune of $4.7 million.

The researchers are embarking on a 5-year journey from 2018 where they will be testing the use of supplements in various populations.

They want to get first-hand information on whether supplementation can help prevent cognitive decline in seniors and whether the association is stronger in Latinos and African-Americans.

The leader of this research professor of neurology John Olichney is on record saying that vitamin D deficiency normally affects the elderly because the skin does not effectively synthesize the vitamin as people grow older.

He states that the problem is more rampant in persons who have darker skin.

The study will follow 180 participants in the East Bay and Sacramento regions.

Among the group a third will have normal cognition, another third will have isolated memory loss, while the rest of the group will have mild Alzheimer’s dementia.

Every participant will get Vitamin D supplements. Half the group will be on a high dosage- 4,000 units daily while the rest will get standard intake that comprises 800 international units as the Institute of Medicine recommends.

We have to wait for the results of this study to get a better picture of the relationship between vitamin D and dementia.

Closing Remarks

While some studies show strong links between dementia development and vitamin D deficiency, researchers cannot conclude that vitamin D deficiency results in dementia.

On the flip side, some studies have found that there is no association between vitamin D and dementia. It goes to show that further research and clinical trials are necessary to establish cause and effect.

This will give a conclusive answer on whether adequate levels of vitamin D can treat or prevent dementia.

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