Dementia is a medical condition that typically affects individuals, as they get older and manifests as depreciating social and intellectual abilities. Contrarily, early onset dementia (EOD) is a rare type of dementia that affects individuals under 65 years old. The bigger question is dementia hereditary, and how does EOD occur?
EOD is commonly diagnosed as either Alzheimer’s or fronto-temporal dementia. Not only is dementia hereditary, but it occurs as sporadic Alzheimer’s where there is damage to the beta-amyloid and tau proteins. The beta-amyloid proteins aggregate to form plaques and twisted fibers of tau that damage the brain’s nerve cells. The buildup of the proteins starts in the brain’s memory sections before progressing to other parts, thereby affecting physical and social activity.
The mutation on the PSEN 1, PSEN2, and the APP genes answer the enigma is dementia hereditary since they are responsible for EOD. Apart from the pharmacological therapy of Alzheimer’s, which many MDs find ineffective, such as donepezil, memantine, galantamine, and rivastigmine, EOD patients can seek natural medicine treatment options.
The Cause of Dementia
- Family history and genetics
- Advancing age
- Insulin resistance/diabetes
- Obesity chronic inflammation
- Traumatic brain injury
- Chronic infections
- Elevated lipids
- Toxic metals
- Nutrient deficiencies
- Omega 3 fatty acid deficiencies
- Hormone imbalance
- Disturbed sleep
One of the diverse ways a caregiver can improve the condition of an early onset dementia patient is by modifying their routine to encompass mental stimulatory exercises. These activities include speech and music therapy, where the patient talks about themselves and their hobbies. Listening to music while having a conversation can boost the brain’s ability to recall previous personal information. Other mental stimulating activities that aid in alleviating early onset dementia include drawing, singing, word games, and art.
The stimulating mental activities should always be tailored to the patient’s interest and are achieved by asking the patient to show the caregiver their hobbies. Caregivers should reminisce about the patient’s life because long-term memory remains stronger in EOD patients.
Physical activity and other exercises can assist in regulating sleep and alleviate restlessness in EOD patients. Additionally, physical activity prevents the development of depression and aids in maintaining a positive mood. These exercises include walking, dancing, water aerobics, gardening, tandem biking, and fishing. Furthermore, physical activity increases blood supply in the body and helps in reinforcing neuron connection in the brain of EOD patients.
EOD has an immense effect on resting and sleeping patterns, making it difficult for dementia patients to get a goodnight’s rest. Therefore, getting enough sleep improves the brain’s processing capacity during the daytime and keeps one healthy. Caregivers should encourage EOD patients to rest well and engage in calming activities before bedtime. These activities include reading books or playing cards to slow down the brain and enhance a good night’s rest.
Supplements for Early Onset Dementia
Many patients prefer complementary medications such as supplements than conventional therapies such as donepezil for the management of EOD. Natural supplements may help in alleviating the symptoms of dementia, thereby improving their health status. These supplements include vitamin D, Bacopa Monnieri, ginseng, Ginkgo biloba, omega-3 fatty acids, and turmeric. The omega-3 fatty acids are known to decrease inflammation and increase intellectual activity, while high doses of vitamin D enhances brain health.
Turmeric has multiple benefits in the body and aids in removing plaques in brain tissues. The herb, Bacopa monnieri, enhances memory and reduces anxiety while Ginkgo biloba contains active constituents with anti-aging properties. Panax ginseng has anti-aging properties that decrease cognitive impairment. Additionally, ginseng produces neuroprotective effects that lessen the progress EOD.
Contact the Sacramento Naturopathic Medical Center, 916-446-2591, to schedule a FREE 15 minute phone consultation to ask questions of the doctor about how you can become a patient, and optimize your health through finding the cause of your health concerns and treating with natural medicine.