Preventing and Relieving Symptoms of Dementia Naturally

What is Dementia?

Dementia is not a disease. It’s an umbrella term for a category of diseases that have symptoms commonly or consistently occurring together. 

Dementia is usually a chronic or progressive condition, and the decline in cognitive function for a person affected by dementia is beyond what is considered normal for an elderly person. 

Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia, but there are many types of dementia including:

  • Vascular dementia
  • Dementia with Lewy Bodies (DLB)
  • Parkinson’s Disease Dementia
  • Mixed Dementia
  • Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD)
  • Huntington’s Disease
  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (Mad Cow Disease)
  • Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus
  • Wernicke-Korsakoff Disease
  • Early Onset Dementia

Many other diseases, including multiple sclerosis, can also cause dementia in their later stages.

Dementia affects memory, reasoning, understanding, judgement, language and the ability to learn new things. There can also be a drop in emotional control and motivation.

Dementia is one of the major causes of disability among the elderly, and because of the loss of independent function, dementia creates a level of dependency upon others that can be overwhelming for the person experiencing dementia, as well as for his or her caregiver.

The Different Stages of Dementia

The different stages of dementia are best understood if you consider that the signs and symptoms of the disease can be gradual and can worsen over time.

The early stage of dementia is often missed or overlooked because the onset of symptoms is so gradual, and they often are attributed to the normal effects of aging. Common signs of dementia in the early stage include forgetfulness, losing track of time, and getting lost in familiar places. 

The middle stage of dementia is characterized by more restrictive and more noticeable symptoms. 

  • Forgetting recent events and people’s names
  • Getting lost at home
  • Having trouble communicating 
  • Having difficulty concentrating or completing complex tasks or problems
  • Needing help with personal care
  • Experiencing behavior and mood changes, including wandering, repeated questioning, and denial there is something wrong

The late stage of dementia is one of near total dependence and inactivity. In this stage a person is commonly unaware of when and where he or she is, often has difficulty recognizing family and friends, has difficulty walking and sleeping, and may have a need for assisted living. Behavior changes in the late stage of dementia can include aggression, depression, agitation, anxiety, paranoia, and delusion. 

Treating Dementia

No treatment currently exists to cure dementia or completely stop its progression. However, holistic healing and natural living methods that focus on strengthening vitality, immunity, and mental acuity can help slow down the progression.

Nourish the brain with the nutrients it needs to stay healthy, supple and vibrant by eating a healthy diet, particularly one rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

Supplement your diet with natural herbs and spices. Many herbs have been studied for their effect on cognitive function, but two of the most common include Ginkgo biloba and Huperzia serrata.

Food as medicine is the foundation of Hildegard’s approach to natural healing and medicine, and one Hildegard’s favorite herbs for vitality and a strong mental state was Bertram. Hildegard cherished Bertram, also called Pellitory, as a means for improved mental acuity, memory and mood enhancement without notable side effects. Recent studies have confirmed Pellitory (Anacyclus pyrethrum root) produces a significant antidepressant effect by way of interaction with adrenergic and dopamine receptors.

In addition, Pellitory plays a role in Ayurvedic tradition. Known as Akarkara in Ayurveda, Pellitory demonstrates memory enhancing properties and has been shown to augment cholinergic neurotransmission, resulting in improvement in cognition.

Keep your brain strong and healthy with exercise. Moderate physical activity three times a week has been shown to improve cognitive performance and reduce cognitive decline.

Get the blood flowing to the brain with acupuncture and massage therapy. Both methodologies can reduce stress and physical pain and help keep the mind healthy by stimulating the delivery of nutrients and oxygen to the brain and delivery of toxins to the excretory system for removal from the body.

Listen to music. Music stimulates the brain, and studies have shown that music therapy can help prevent and relieve symptoms of dementia.

Exercise the mind with brain games and mental exercises and puzzles. Forcing the mind to engage helps increase the number and strength of connections between brain cells.

Participate in regular social activities. Socializing creates connections between people but also promotes new connections between brain cells because socializing requires the brain to be active and engaged.

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