Treatment for Dementia

Dementia is caused by many different conditions and problems, and the treatment prescribed for dementia varies depending on the cause and the symptoms. The treatment for dementia includes both direct treatments, which are meant to slow the progress of progressive dementia by boosting brain function, and treatments that are meant to minimize the effects of dementia symptoms.

As of now, there is no cure for most forms of dementia, but there are a number of treatments for dementia. Generally, doctors focus on minimizing the effects of the condition and providing modifications and changes to help individuals and their families cope with the changing reality of life with reduced memory, communication and coping skills.

Other forms of dementia can be treated and even reversed when the cause is a medical condition that can be treated. In those cases, treating the cause, such as a vitamin deficiency or hypothyroidism, may restore all or some of the mental function that has been lost to dementia. In addition to those condition-specific treatments, there are also alternative treatments that address the symptoms of dementia directly.

Drug Treatment

Doctors use medications to treat dementia in several ways.

* Correcting the underlying cause of the dementia, such as antibiotics for infections, thyroid replacement hormones for hypothyroidism and vitamin B12 to treat vitamin deficiency.

* Managing symptoms of dementia, including medications for depression, agitation, hallucinations and depression

* Preventing strokes in people who suffer from vascular dementia

* Maintaining mental functioning when dementia is irreversible

The medications used include drugs such as Aricept, Reminyl and Exelon, which were developed to treat Alzheimer’s disease but which may help maintain functioning in other types of dementia as well. Medications used to treat mood and behavior problems include Risperdal and Zyprexa, which are antipsychotic drugs, and SSRI antidepressants. Some researchers are studying the effects of NSAIDs, drugs that lower cholesterol and antioxidants for the treatment of dementia. All of these drugs have side effects, and none can actually cure dementia.

Surgical Treatment

Surgery is not a treatment for dementia, but doctors may use surgery to deal with a condition that may be causing the dementia. If the cause is a brain tumor, for example, doctors may recommend surgery to remove the tumor. Pressure on the brain from subdural hematomas may cause symptoms resembling dementia. In that case, draining or scraping the hematomas may also relieve the symptoms of dementia.

Alternative Therapies

In addition to traditional treatment for dementia, some people turn to alternative medicine to help relieve the symptoms. Nutritional supplements that may help with symptoms of dementia include bilberry, ginkgo biloba, grape seed, milk thistle, holy basil, turmeric and olive oil. Research has shown that people physical, mental and social activity can help slow the onset of symptoms. Based on that, occupational therapy, adult day care and structured schedules are sometimes incorporated in treatment for dementia. Aromatherapy, music therapy and pet therapy may also be helpful.

Stem Cell Therapy for Dementia

As few as 20 years ago, scientists believed that brain cells could die, but that the human body does not manufacture new brain cells. In 1992, two separate research laboratories discovered that stem cells, cells that renew themselves and generate new cells needed by the body, exist within the brain. Since then, researchers have worked toward understanding stem cell behavior, finding ways to stimulate stem cells to produce new brain cells and getting them to integrate appropriately with existing brain cells. Stem cell therapy presents one of the most exciting potentials for real cure and treatment for dementia in the very near future.

If you are a possible stem cell patient, learn more to get a stem cell cure. Many terrific options exist for better health.

If you're a medical doctor and would like to learn and incorporate various stem cell treatments into your medical practice, please continue to learn more to get the proper stem cell medical training as many advancements are now being made weekly.