Honey and Dementia- Is Honey Good For Dementia?

honey and dementia

We reviewed and examined many studies that found the connection between honey and dementia.

Honey might hold the key to reducing the risk of developing dementia.

While honey is known for its high sugar content, it’s still considered a great alternative to sugar in its conventional form.

It’s also gaining favor for its neuroinflammation action particularly when it comes to the brain’s hippocampus section, which is the part of the brain that is responsible for spatial memory.

That’s why the subject of honey and dementia is INCREASINGLY becoming an area of interest.

The Profile of Honey

the profile of honey
Honey has a profile that contains different concentrations of compounds that are beneficial to the body’s wellbeing in general.

The compounds honey contains consist of enzymatic and non-enzymatic groups.

The enzymatic compounds include:

  • Catalase
  • Glucose oxidase
  • Peroxidase

While the non-enzymatic elements include:

  • Amino acids
  • Ascorbic Acid
  • Tocopherol
  • Proteins
  • Phenolic Acids
  • Carotenoids
  • Flavonoids

Honey also has a decent amount of acetylcholine and choline. Two neurotransmitters that are essential in promoting brain function.

The concentration of these antioxidants is dependent on the specific type of honey. Studies have established correlations between phenolic compounds and flavonoids with honey that has floral origins.

In turn, the phenolic content contained in any honey has an IMPACT on its antioxidant activity.

Some studies on honey and dementia have shown that honey can increase plasma antioxidants in tissues.

In turn, honey helps improve brain cell integrity and D as well as reduce oxidative damage.

The Study on Honey and Dementia

study on memory loss using honey
Honey has therapeutic and natural antioxidant properties that scientists have found are beneficial in preventing cognitive decline, and ultimately dementia.

According to research, honey can potentially have positive effects when it comes to treating a range of cancers and also reducing Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) symptoms (see gut health and dementia).

The study took a five-year period concluding in 2008, and researchers focussed their efforts on assessing the impacts that honey had in relation to neurological conditions.

3,000 patients participated in the study, and half the number of participants consumed a daily honey dose.

When the study ended, 489 participants had developed dementia.

95 of the people who had developed dementia were from the group that ate the daily dose of honey.

The rest came out of the group that hadn’t eaten any honey over the duration of the study.

How Honey Can Help Reduce The Risk of Dementia

how honey can help reduce the risk of dementia
Yet another study conducted in 2014 on honey and dementia found that honey is loaded with polyphenols which refers to beneficial natural compounds.

Polyphenols were found to reduce the inflammations experienced in the brain while also improving memory loss.

The inflammation that occurs in the brain has a link to Alzheimer’s disease.

Researchers set out to look into the effects honey had on a range of neurological conditions INCLUDING Huntington’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease.

The conclusion was that honey had strong antibacterial properties that proved helpful in combating the MRSA superbug.

New Zealand produces Manuka honey which originates from the manuka bushes that are pollinated by bees.

The research found that this particular honey gave antibiotics the “nudge” needed to become more effective, and in some instances, even reverse the body’s antibiotic resistance.

Manuka honey also proves helpful in treating strep throat that comes about from an inflammation in the area.

Plus, it assists in stopping the action of bacteria that triggers infection growth.

The Impact of Honey and Dementia In Relation to Oxidative Damage

the impact of honey and dementia in relation to oxidative damage
Research also found that honey consumption could improve overall cognitive function in postmenopausal women.

The study also further assesses the ability of honey to protect the brain against oxidative damage that comes about with aging.

Oxidative damage is observed most in regions of the brain that are known to cause the cognitive dysfunctions seen with Alzheimer’s disease.

Oxidative damage has also been identified as an impediment to the process of transcription and replication of mitochondrial DNA.

In turn, it AFFECTS the biological circulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) that assist with countering oxidative stress and maintaining the antioxidant defense systems of the body’s cells.

That is where honey’s antioxidant properties come in again because it can help boost ROS function while also restoring the antioxidant defense system.

Final Thoughts About Honey and Dementia

The studies on honey and dementia found that oxidative stress is one of the aspects that cause neurodegenerative disorders as we age.

The studies also concluded that honey can have a POSITIVE effect as a therapeutic agent to fight against oxidative damage while also slowing down the process of cognitive decline.

Honey supplementation can also boost the antioxidant defense system within the brain cells which in turn helps preserve cognitive ability and brain functions.

However, it’s always best to talk to your doctor first. Too much honey will not necessarily bring better results, so pay close attention.

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.

Music Therapy and Dementia (How It Helps?)

music therapy and dementia

After several studies and researches, we also tested it ourself and it shows that music therapy and dementia go very well together.

The number of people with dementia continues to soar. Statistics indicate that about fifty million people globally are living with dementia.

Because the illness does not have a cure yet, experts in the field and caregivers continue to explore ways and therapies to offer care and support to individuals with dementia.

One of the care methods that has PROVED to have DRAMATIC effects on people with dementia is music therapy.

This is a type of treatment that seeks to improve functioning to enhance the quality of life.

The Amazing Benefits Of Music Therapy

Over the years, there have been many scientific findings showing that music therapy comes with numerous benefits to persons with dementia.

Check out some of the ways music therapy and dementia go hand in hand to help people with the condition.

Helps Unlock Memories

helps unlock memories
Music has the power to unlock memories. Studies reveal that music has a way of reaching parts of a damaged brain that other forms of communication cannot penetrate.

Professor Paul Robertson, an academic and concert violinist, reported that humans tend to remain contactable as musical beings on a certain level up until they take their very last breath.

He explained his findings further by stating that the brain’s auditory system is usually THE FIRST to function fully at sixteen weeks, implying that a person is musically receptive first.

In this case, it is a first in, last out situation.

This is one of the reasons multiple musical organizations offer home care visits that benefit residents with dementia.

Evokes Engagement

evokes engagement
When talking about music therapy and dementia, it is important to understand that music does not only affect you emotionally but physically as well.

Experts explain that the sounds that music therapy produces help to awaken some parts of the brain that have not been impacted by dementia.

Music EVOKES responses like movement, humming or singing, and short-term reconnection moments with loved ones.

This typically works when an individual remembers the songs they used to love when they were young.

The type of music usually has the strongest responses scoring highly in regards to recollection and engagement.

Unfamiliar music can also work well, especially when it has no negative reactions since it carries no emotions or memories.

Can Be a Welcome Distraction

music therapy and dementia
Music therapy is normally beneficial in all stages of dementia from the onset of the disease all the way to the last stages.

For instance, during the middle stages, a person with dementia may experience challenges with their behaviors.

At this point, music can be a great way to distract an individual.

A caregiver or aide can sing to a person when they are feeling frustrated or uneasy and it can help calm them down.

This may also work when the individual is handling a specific job. The music can give them the MOTIVATION they need to complete the tasks at hand.

Uplifts Moods

uplifts moods
Many are the times when persons with dementia feel low for one reason or the other. Music, for a long time, has proved to help brighten the moods of people with the illness.

Music can also help seniors to fight depression while encouraging positive interactions.

An individual may be sulking one minute, but when they listen to music, a smile may start forming on their face right away.

When you want to improve moods, it is usually best to play “stimulative music” that features quick tempos as well as percussive sounds. This kind tends to promote energy and movement naturally.

Leads to Better Health

leads to better health
Better health is often associated with music therapy and dementia. This kind of treatment can STIMULATE and STRUCTURE physical movement.

It is particularly helpful in those who are less likely to work out or engage in other physical activity.

It goes without saying that physical activity facilitates the health of various systems in the body including lymphatic, digestive, cardiovascular, respiratory, nervous, and skeletal/muscular among many others.

When verbal directions cannot be used to give out directions for exercise programs, music can offer the rhythm that is needed to stimulate participation.

Singing aids a person in deep breathing a prerequisite for physical relaxation.

This often precedes deep relaxation and sleep at times. Singing is enjoyable and comfortable for many.

Reduces Social Isolation

reduces social isolation
It happens commonly that music therapy professionals conduct group sessions for persons who have dementia.

This helps to reduce social isolation because it encourages golden-agers with the illness to go out there and interact with other people.

It is especially helpful for people who feel like they do not belong to any group. Thus, shy away from activities that can significantly benefit them at the end of the day.

When a person who is around others with a similar condition, they are bound to open up. This can result in making new friends and participating in fun activities that will make them happy.

Assist with Speech

assist with speech
Many experts agree that music therapy plays a crucial role in helping persons with dementia to communicate effectively. Persons who work with therapists have been known to speak clearer and even make better decisions.

When a person listens to music, they can pick up some words they know to help them construct sensible sentences to hold a conversation with another person without too much difficulty.

The therapy can even help SLOW DOWN sleep deterioration and language skills in individuals with dementia.

Some studies show that even though a person with this disease loses the ability to speak, most of the time, they can still recognize, or also sing or hum their favorite tunes.

Can Be Part of a Holistic Treatment Approach

can be part of a holistic treatment approach
Experts who deal with music therapy and dementia can combine the therapy with other therapeutical activities to come up with a holistic treatment approach to dementia.

Professional therapists can guide senior citizens with dementia as they participate in other activities such as games, creating art, cooking, crafts, and gardening, etc.

The experts should ensure that seniors with the medical condition always have a relaxed environment. A location where they can have fun without any stringent schedules to adhere to.

Even in the later stages, music therapy can also be used to offer a sense of better control over life.

It helps coordinate motor movements and aid in enhanced brain function.

Reduce Anxiety and Stress

reduce anxiety and stress
Music therapy offers persons with dementia an avenue to get other people to listen to them and communicate experiences to find ways of distressing.

Participating in this type of treatment brings about positive influences in various areas of a person’s life.

This includes hope, communication skills, optimism, and well-being.

Many individuals with the illness also record increases in perceived happiness, enjoyment, enhanced mental health, and improved quality of life.

Additionally, structured therapy improves the potential for positive experiences leading to a positive impact on factors like self-efficacy and esteem.

This is important because it makes a person feel worthy again to live their lives to the fullest despite what they are going through.

Boosts Good Feelings and Ideas

boosts good feelings and ideas
Let’s face it, when listening to music, it is ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE to feel down. Sure, we need to focus on listening to the music that cheers us up and makes us feel good.

Why would you even want to listen to the tunes that make you feel sad and lonely?

Of course, music therapy is a FANTASTIC approach that will boost good feelings and great ideas in a person with dementia. It is a simple technique that almost always does the trick.

You can practice it immediately, especially if you have their favorite artist at hand. Raise the good vibes and let everyone in the room feel good by tuning in some good songs.

Manages Sleep Disorders

manages sleep disorders
It is not uncommon for persons with dementia to experience troubles when it comes to sleep patterns.

Music therapy can assist such individuals to have longer hours of deep sleep. This is a great move for the health of an individual.

After all, getting enough rest and sleep is another way of reducing stress, anxiety, and agitation.

In regards to sleep, some people who have dementia will sleep better when they listen to some soothing tunes before they retire to bed.

Listening to such music helps to calm the soul so that an individual is not overthinking. Meaning, they can sleep peacefully for longer hours.

Some experts advise that listening to music before sleeping helps with insomnia, too.

Improves Motor-Functioning

improves motor functioning
Enhanced motor functioning is another area where individuals with dementia can benefit when they start music therapy.

When good music is playing, there is a high chance that the person listening will want to move about and dance.

Even when a person cannot stand up, they will probably move their arms and legs promoting coordination.

Tapping and clapping is another response to music that can help introduce feel-good hormones and get the blood flowing right.

A person can also improve their motor skills when they are playing an instrument. It can lead to more independence, especially if an individual is not yet in the last stages of the disease.

Music Therapy and Dementia Closing Remarks

The Alzheimer’s Association confirms that music therapy helps to add something fundamental to the lives of individuals with dementia-related illnesses.

This is why it is important to learn about music therapy and dementia. To some extent, it would be safe to say that music is therapeutic.

It offers individuals with the illness a chance not only to express themselves but also to engage with others.

Note that the simple act of playing music is not considered music therapy. Only credentialed experts can provide musical treatment so that it can bring out the desired effects in persons with dementia.

You must, therefore, DO ENOUGH RESEARCH when looking for a professional therapist to ensure that the individual with dementia remains in good hands.

Improve Memory: Blueberries and Dementia

blueberries and dementia

There has been a lot of interest in the topic of blueberries and dementia when looking into the foods that can help improve memory.

For years, researchers have been looking into whether consumption of blueberries can help prevent the onset of dementia or perhaps slow down its progression.

This is because blueberries have been known to keep blood vessels clear of plaque, fight off the harmful effects of free radicals, and give people a boost from plant-based chemicals.

Blueberries and Dementia Prevention Benefits

The little blue fruits have also gained a reputation for being brain food that can improve memory and cognitive function.

Several studies have been done to identify the link between berries and this progressive illness.

Below we explore a couple of studies that investigated the link between dementia and blueberries.

Blueberries can Help Slow Cognitive Decline

blueberries can help slow cognitive decline
Research published in Annals of Neurology reported that consuming flavonoids and berries slows down the rate of cognitive decline in women who are 70 years and older.

The study utilized data from a Nurse’s Health Study with over 120,000 registered nurses.

The researchers conducted the assessments on 16,010 participants all of whom were women. The Nurses Health Study commenced in 1976.

After four years, the participants were mostly asked questions about their eating habits. Over 16, 000 ladies also underwent memory testing between 1995 and 2001.

Researchers from different institutions including Harvard Medical School, Brigham Women’s Hospital, and German Centre for Neurodegenerative Disease uncovered that greater ingestion of strawberries and blueberries correlated with slower cognitive decline rates for up to two and a half years.

The ladies who showed the most improvement were taking two or more servings of berries weekly.

The authors of the study acknowledged that smaller trials of berry supplementation have also showcased positive results. They also stated that the study was only observational seeing that it primarily relied on dietary reporting from the nurses.

Furthermore, they also reported that it was not clear if the results would also apply to men because all the participants were ladies.

The authors encouraged males to take part in future studies to come up with more conclusive results. They also encouraged seniors to consume more berries as they can help delay memory decline.

Blueberries can Boost Brain Function

blueberries can boost brain function
Some studies also confirm that blueberries do not only improve memory, but they can also maintain brain functionc.

Animal studies investigating ties between blueberries and dementia reveal that blueberries contain tons of phytochemicals that have a wealth of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.

Additionally, anthocyanins and polyphenols present in blueberries can boost signaling in the brain centers that are associated with memory.

They also help to eliminate glucose which also helps to slow down memory decline.

Human studies on the same have also yielded promising results. In one of these studies, 12 seniors who had mild cognitive impairment took blueberry juice daily.

Blueberries can Improve Working Memory

They experienced improvements in functions of the brain and there was also evidence of improvements in working memory. This research is from the University of Exeter.

The researchers looked into the effects of the consumption of wild blueberry juice on memory decline in 12 adults who were aged 65-77. All the participants were experiencing memory decline related to aging showcasing symptoms like memory lapses.

The participants took 2 1/2 cups of blueberry juice for 12 weeks. This juice was made from commercially available frozen wild blueberries.

A comparison group of 14 adults was drinking a similar amount of placebo non-juice beverage for twelve weeks.

Researchers conducted several memory tests such as list learning, recall, and word association tasks before and after the study. The professionals also used an MRI scanner to monitor the brain function of the participants.

They also measured resting blood flow. The results indicated that the older adults who drank blueberry juice showed improvements in memory and learning tests when compared to the placebo group.

Researchers also said that they observed trends that suggested lower glucose levels and reduced depression symptoms among the participants who were drinking wild blueberry juice.

It is important to note that this study on blueberries and dementia excluded people who consumed more than 5 portions of vegetables and fruit daily.

The participants were told to stick to their normal diet throughout the entire study. Based on the results, more research needs to be done to confirm these results.

Blueberries May Lower the Risk of Dementia

blueberries and dementia
Blueberries are categorized among the superfoods linked to a lower risk of dementia.

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition observed 2,801 women and men who were over 50 years. At the beginning of the study, all the participants did not have dementia.

Over at least 20 years of follow-up, the professionals collected diet information at 5 periodic health examinations. 193 participants during this time developed Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia.

Lowered dementia risk was associated with intake of one type of flavonoid, anthocyanins abundant in red wine, strawberries, and blueberries.

Other foods that also contributed include oranges, pears, apples, tea, and bananas. The study controlled for numerous behavioral and health characteristics.

Additionally, subjects adhered to the government’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans which in addition to vegetables and fruits also emphasizes lean meats, whole grains, and other heart-healthy foods.

Paul F. Jacques the senior author of the study who is a scientist with Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Centre on Aging at Tufts University stated that consumption by the individuals who benefited was not huge.

The monthly average was about 71/2 cup serving of blueberries or strawberries, 17 cups of tea, and 8 apples or pears.

He explained that it did not take much and all it took was a couple of servings of berries weekly and maybe an apple or two.

Closing Thoughts

Health providers continue to be faced with multiple questions about recommendations for enhancing or maintaining cognitive function especially for people who have dementia.

Currently, several studies have been done to try and find out if there is a connection between the consumption of blueberries and dementia prevention.

Although many experts agree that taking blueberries is beneficial for the brain, further research is still necessary to confirm if they can help persons with dementia.

Coping With Dementia And Behavior Changes

coping with dementia

It is vitally important to be armed with the right information about coping with dementia and behavior changes.

A person who has dementia goes through many stages and conditions in their lives, which might surprise you if you are unaware of them.

This is because the disease affects the brain triggering the loss of thinking skills, memory, communication, and many other aspects.

People with dementia may behave differently, especially during the middle to the final stages of the illness.

It mostly happens when an individual discovers that they are no longer in control of what is happening in and out of their lives.

This can cause a lot of stress not only for the person who has dementia but their loved ones and caregivers as well.

Depending on how the illness affects a person, there are various ways you may notice changes in how they conduct themselves.

Coping with dementia behavior changes

Here are a few common behavior changes examples and what to do when they occur.

Fidgeting and Restlessness

coping with dementia fidgeting and restlessness
At some point, many people with dementia will develop restlessness behaviors. This is where an individual gets into the habit of pacing up and down without reason.

They may also start fidgeting without cause from the blues. Some will get agitated very quickly and may want to lash out at people all the time.

To take care of this issue, it is important that the person with dementia have a routine that they try and stick to on a daily basis.

This can help to keep them calm because they know what they do every day; thus, there is no need to fidget around or be restless.

Regular exercise has also been known to minimize restlessness.

When you notice that a person is always fidgeting, it is advisable to keep their hands busy with items like worry beads, or other items that they consider meaningful.

In the case of agitation, it may help to create a calm, soothing environment for a person who is triggered. Talking reassuring and lovingly to the person can help cool them down.

You may also want to consider something like a massage or any other activity that helps promote relaxation.


coping with dementia wandering
Individuals who have dementia may start to walk around aimlessly.

There are multiple reasons why they can do this, such as medication side effects, boredom, or they want to look for someone or something.

Wandering can put someone in danger.

A person can even get lost since they may not be able to trace their way back home.

To prevent this from happening, there are a couple of solutions you can explore to help you in the journey of coping with dementia, like:

  • Changing locks so that the person with the illness cannot easily get out of the house alone. It may seem a little mean, but there are times when you need to do this to keep the individual safe.
  • Accompanying the individuals on walks or when they go to the shops is encouraged.
  • Consider alarm systems, home monitoring systems, and tracking devices to enhance security.
  • A person fond of wandering should wear an ID bracelet with the phone number of a relative. It comes in handy when somehow they get lost because someone out there can help them get reunited with their caregiver.

Hallucinations and Delusions

hallucinations and delusions
A person with dementia may, at times, develop false beliefs or delusions.

At times when a person with dementia experiences delusions, it can be paranoia.

For instance, a person might think that a spouse is being unfaithful, someone is stealing from them or people are out to get them.

Delusions can also be related to loss of memory. In such an instance, one might want to wake up and go to work even when they retired long ago.

Others may feel the need to take care of children even when they do not have any or get in a car and drive when they do not have a license.

When a person is going through these episodes, it is important to go in and see the doctor. The professional will be in the best position to rule out any medical issues.

Abrupt mental status changes can be brought about by pneumonia, constipation, urinary tract infections, dehydration, and other medical conditions.

At home, loved ones can try and distract the person with dementia with a conversation that sparks their interest.

Caregivers should not tell the affected individual not to be scared.

Instead, it is better to empathize with what they are going through and offer reassurance in a comforting and respectful manner.

You should also check out the environment that triggers hallucinations.

Be on the lookout for auditory and visual cues that may make a person feel threatened.

Eliminate or minimize shadows, objects, and noises that can be misperceived as disturbing or scary.

You should also try and identify the items that make the person feel secure.

It can be anything from a stuffed animal, photography, spiritual or religious item.


A high percentage of people with dementia also suffer from depression.

Getting to know if a person who has dementia also has depression can be quite challenging since both conditions have similar symptoms.

A medical professional can, however, conduct a thorough evaluation to diagnose depression.

Thankfully, depression does not have to be a huge burden to someone coping with dementia.

Treatment is available and it normally involves a combination of counseling, medication and continuing reconnection to people and activities that bring bliss.

As a caregiver do not be the one always to tell a dementia patient to “try harder,” “snap out of it,” or “cheer up” because this rarely helps.

People who have dementia and depression cannot simply get better by themselves. They need a lot of professional help, reassurance, and support.

Sleep Problems

sleep problems
Many senior dementia patients complain about sleep all the time. Poor sleeping habits, certain medications, alcohol use, and stress are some contributing factors that lead to disturbed sleep.

Restlessness, agitation, and confusion can also affect how a person with dementia sleeps.

Studies reveal that sleep issues are one of the reasons individuals with dementia have to stay in nursing homes.

So that a person can function well, they must get enough quality sleep.

Some tips that can help with ensuring a person with dementia does not end up struggling to get a shut-eye include:

1. Keeping away from alcohol because it contributes to confusion and also increases anxiety.

2. Limit beverages and food that contain high caffeine levels, especially later in the day because it can lead to sleeplessness.

3. Plan the days in a way that incorporates numerous activities. When you fill-up the days with meaningful activities, it can lead to exhaustion so that a person sleeps well at night.

It can be anything from taking walks, exercising, or participating in involving hobbies. However, you must be careful not to overstimulate the individual with dementia.

This will only lead to disorientation, which is not healthy for one’s sleeping time. It is also important to limit nap time as this can also affect how a person sleeps.

It may also help to come up with a bedtime routine that mainly focuses on relaxing activities such as giving the person with the illness a massage or listening to soft music.


Some people will dementia will pick up a habit along the way where they cannot let go of their possessions.

As a person who is coping with dementia, several things that can lead to the development of this behavior like isolation, loss, fear, and memories of the past.

To help the individual deal with this, you can try and keep them busy with other things. For instance, you can give them a box full of different items that they can sort.

You can also learn where a person hides the things they want to hoard and remove them without the individual noticing.

You must be very careful with this so as not to agitate them further causing more problems.

Closing Remarks

There is no set of rules that you should follow when it comes to coping with dementia.

To best meet the challenges, you need to use a lot of compassion, creativity, patience, and flexibility to try and make the best out of a rather challenging situation.

Some things must be put into consideration when dealing with a person who has dementia, like:

1. It is not possible to change the person because it is a brain disorder that shapes how they behave.

2. Rather than try and control behavior, it’s best to try and accommodate the new changes in the best possible way.

For example, if a person wants to sleep on the floor, do not force them to climb on the bed. You can place a mattress on the floor instead to make them feel as comfortable as possible.

3. When there is a sudden behavior change, it is always wise to consult with a doctor. This is because some problems may come about because of various underlying medical reasons.

A person with dementia may be in pain or be experiencing side effects from the medications they are taking.

Sometimes, hallucinations or side effects may be caused by treatment or medication that is helping to manage the condition.

Acupuncture and Dementia for Improved Memory

acupuncture and dementia

There have been several studies looking into acupuncture and dementia. This is because there is an assumption that the treatment technique can help improve memory in persons with neurodegenerative illnesses.

Professionals perform acupuncture on a holistic perspective in a bid to defeat various exogenous factors.

Reports confirm that acupuncture may help protect neurons from deterioration to stimulate axonal regrowth in neurodegenerative illnesses like dementia.

Check out more details on what acupuncture is and how it can help improve memory in persons with dementia.

What is Acupuncture?

what is acupuncture
We can describe acupuncture as an ancient Chinese healing method.

It primarily treats various disorders by having expert insert needles into the skin. When the practitioner does things properly, acupuncture is very safe.

WHO (World Health Organization) recommends the use of this healing technique for 43 diseases.

Experts base this theory on acupoints and meridians that play a crucial role in maintaining and regulating the “yin” and “yang” in the human body system.

This is all about Qi which is patterns of energy in the body that are important for good health. When a person’s Qi is interrupted, many believe that this can cause diseases.

Acupuncturists believe that they can fix this by inserting needles in specific locations on the skin to restore energy flow, hence treat the illness.

How Acupuncture Helps Improve Memory of Persons with Dementia?

how-acupuncture helps improve memory of persons with dementia
For many people with dementia, acupuncture is not a foreign concept. One of the ways of using acupuncture is to treat some dementia symptoms like behavioral disturbances.

New studies, however, claim that acupuncture can also help to enhance memory for persons with dementia.

Several studies have been conducted to explain the relationship between acupuncture and dementia such as:

Acupuncture Outperforms Use of Drugs

acupuncture outperforms use of drugs
Multiple clinical trials reveal that acupuncture works better than drug therapy when it comes to treating vascular dementia.

While there are different types of acupuncture several studies conclude that scalp acupuncture is the most beneficial for persons who have vascular dementia.

Researchers from Wuhan University of Science and Technology found out that acupuncture is more effective at alleviating dementia than conventional drug therapy.

Their study indicates that acupuncture is also a safe treatment option for vascular dementia.

It is important to note that dementia affects the flow of blood to the brain.

Consequently depriving this organ of essential nutrients and oxygen. When this happens, it affects language skills, memory, personality, and emotions.

The researchers cite TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) theory as the basis of their study which involved three groups of people.

One group was on drug therapy where they received 0.8 g tablets of piracetam for 30 days three times a day. This is a drug that helps to enhance cognition or memory.

It is also an anticonvulsant, neuroprotective, and improves neuroplasticity. The second group was on conventional acupuncture, and the third on scalp acupuncture.

Scalp Acupuncture is Most Effective

This went on for 30 days where the acupuncture protocols were applied once a day for six days a week. The researchers said that using scalp acupuncture protocol achieved a 90% total effective rate.

Conventional acupuncture was slightly lower at 80% while drug therapy came in last at 60%.

In the future, the researchers were interested in combining scalp acupuncture with the use of piracetam to determine if this would produce more effective results.

a similar study

A similar study with 184 participants all with vascular dementia also showed that acupuncture is an effective treatment modality.

It went on to conclude that scalp acupuncture works well to not only boost memory but daily living activities, social behavior and mental state as well.

In related MRI research touching on acupuncture and dementia, there was a conclusion that acupuncture can help improve hippocampal connectivity in persons with dementia.

The study involved the measuring of some regions that experience disrupted brain connectivity in people with dementia.

After acupuncture sessions, the subjects of the study demonstrated significant improvements in the connectivity for lateral and frontal-temporal hippocampus regions.

Researchers in this study made use of fMRI technology to determine the effects of two acupuncture points in the brain i.e. L14 (Hegu) and LV3 (Taichong).

Acupuncture Weakens Mental Problems that Dementia Cause

acupuncture weakens mental problems that dementia cause
When talking about acupuncture and dementia, worth mentioning is that the healing technique can improve memory by treating mental illnesses that are dementia led.

This is done through amelioration of outside symptoms like lack of sleep which makes memory loss more severe.

One of the studies that came up with this conclusion followed 19 participants who researchers observed in the control stage for one and a half months.

From here, the participants went through 30-minute acupuncture sessions for six weeks.

At the end of these six weeks, the participants recorded improvements in both sleeping and resting times. Another study was performed on persons with dementia and depression.

The study took place in 2000 at Wellesley College.

This followed 11 human subjects who went through acupuncture sessions 2-3 times every week for three months.

The participants recorded improvements in anxiety and depression some of the symptoms that make memory loss worse.

They also experienced more energy levels.

Dr. Nancy Emerson the lead researcher also added that acupuncture helps to relieve pain from other ailments that develop with age encouraging persons with dementia to try out this healing method.

Closing Thoughts

As scientists continue to work on a cure for dementia, multiple studies on acupuncture and dementia show promising results on how the treatment technique can enhance memory in persons with dementia.

The studies out there, nonetheless, are not enough to include acupuncture on the list of dementia treatment options.

They have, however, laid a foundation for more studies that may bring forth more conclusive evidence on whether acupuncture will be established as a treatment option for dementia.

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