As our baby boomer generation ages, many have watched their grandparents, parents, and now siblings and partners be diagnosed and begin to live with an Alzheimer’s or Dementia diagnosis. 6 million Americans currently have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. This number will soar to over 13 million by 2050. 1 in 3 seniors will die with Alzheimer’s or Dementia. This is more than breast and prostate cancer combined. (Alzheimer’s Assn., 2021)
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ALZHEIMER’S AND DEMENTIA?
ALZHEIMER’S-Alzheimer’s is a type of Dementia that affects memory, thinking and behavior. Symptoms eventually grow severe enough to interfere with daily tasks. In a general term, memory loss and other cognitive abilities diminish. Alzheimer’s is not a normal part of aging. The greatest known risk factor is increasing age and the majority of people with Alzheimer’s are 65 and older.
Alzheimer’s worsens over time; it’s progressive. Individuals may lose the ability to carry on a conversation and respond to their environment. The 6th leading cause of death in the U.S., onset typically begins in the part of the brain that affects learning. Noticeable symptoms include mood and behavior changes, disorientation, confusion about events, time and place, memory loss and more. Signs may be more obvious to family and friends. (Alzheimer’s Assn., 2021)
DEMENTIA-There are several different types of Dementia. Alzheimer’s is the most common cause of Dementia and accounts for 60-80 percent of cases. Vascular Dementia accounts for 10 percent of Dementia cases. This Dementia is linked to strokes of other blood flow issues to the brain. Diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol are risk factors. Lewy body dementia patients may experience movement or balance problems, confusion, staring spells or hallucinations. Fronto-Temporal Dementia leads to changes in personality because of the part of the brain it affects. People may embarrass themselves in public, make offensive comments or have problems with language skills. Mixed Dementia is where more than one type of Dementia is present especially in people aged 80 and older. (CDC, 2019)
How is Alzheimer’s treated?
Traditional medical practitioners currently prescribe Aducanumab, the only drug approved by the FDA for the treatment of Alzheimer’s. (Alzheimer’s Assn., 2021)
How is Dementia treated?
Treatment of Dementia depends on the underlying cause. Neurodegenerative dementias, like Alzheimer’s, have no cure, but traditional medical practitioners may use the drug listed above. Other forms of Dementia can sometimes be treated or reversed if an underlying cause is found — such as a side effect of medication, increased pressure on the brain, vitamin deficiency or thyroid hormone imbalance. (CDC, 2019) Medical providers should screen for reversible causes but may overlook these underlying symptoms.
ALTERNATIVE TREATMENTS FOR ALZHEIMER’S AND DEMENTIA
Because Alzheimer’s and Dementia involve the brain, treatments that improve cognition can therefore reduce and improve the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Functional Medicine, the practice of getting to the root causes of diseases both medical and neurological, is a great choice for improving outcomes for Alzheimer’s and Dementia patients.
FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE for the treatment of Alzheimer’s and Dementia involves a strong relationship between the patient and their Functional Medicine Practitioner. As a team, they will look at more than just the symptoms to discover the core reasoning for this medical condition, including factors like diet, medical history, family medical history, work and environmental exposure history, and other medical and psychological issues. This could be through testing checking for related health disorders as well. Blood and other laboratory tests, plus a review of lifestyle and diet (both historically and currently) are all reviewed before devising a treatment plan. Once testing is complete, this comprehensive treatment plan may include diet and lifestyle changes, supplementation, exercise, holistic therapies, and even screening for reversible causes of these diseases.
Functional medicine includes many different types of therapies and avenues of treatment to help patients improve and reduce their symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Dementia. The treatments and therapies that we offer and how they work to improve Alzheimer’s and Dementia symptoms are explained further below.
AO DIGITAL BODY SCAN
Can detect and address issues with genetics, thyroid and/or organ function, nutritional, mineral, and vitamin deficiencies, and much, much more. A 15-minute scan produces a 24-page report that clearly defines the areas that can be addressed with the help of our doctor. To learn more about AO Digital Body Scan, click here to visit our service page.
BRAIN MASTER THERAPY
Begins with a QEEG, an assessment tool that evaluates brainwave patterns. Brain Master therapy is a type of neurofeedback, or guided exercise, for the brain. While watching a movie, the brain’s natural desire to view said movie clearly will drive neurological circuits to normalize brainwaves, enhancing the picture. Over time, the brain learns how to use these new brainwave circuits in everyday life. To learn more about Brain Master Nuerofeedback, click here to visit our service page.
Has three times higher than normal air pressure. In this treatment, oxygen is dissolved into all of the body’s fluids and carried to areas where circulation is diminished or blocked. In this way, extra oxygen can reach damaged tissues and the body can support its own healing process. An excellent therapy for those who suffer from Alzheimer’s, dementia, Parkinson’s, or have sleep disorders associated with dementia, the hyperbaric chamber is amazingly comfortable, non-invasive and one of the lowest risk medical treatments available. To learn more about Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber Therapy, click here to visit our service page.
HYPERTHERMIC OZONE AND CARBONIC ACID TREATMENT THERAPY (HOCATT)
Activates and stimulates the immune system to speed healing. Carbonic Acid naturally sedates the body and calms the central nervous system. The mind and muscles become relaxed. Muscular contracture is decreased, and mitochondrial function is elevated. HOCATT therapy uses a combination of powerful technologies to detox the body down to the cellular level, boost energy and strengthen the immune system. The main modality is Transdermal Ozone, generated from pure oxygen. This detoxification is especially beneficial to those who have been exposed to chemicals or toxins, mold, mildew, parasites and more. To learn more about HOCATT: Hyperthermic Ozone Therapy, click here to visit our service page.
THETA CHAMBER THERAPY
Provides four treatment mechanisms: (1) Vestibular motion throws off the brain’s sense of time and space giving the body a sense of floating, relaxing the body. (2) Cranial Electrotherapy Stimulation (CES) is used to recover repetitive habits and increase suggestibility. (3)Binaural beats create new neural pathways to form, and (4) visual light induces the Theta state, opening the brain to suggestion promoting healing. To learn more about Theta Chamber Therapy, click here to visit our service page.
To learn more, call Michigan Health and Wellness for a FREE consultation. Functional Medicine, Functional Neurology, and their relation to the holistic treatment of Alzheimer’s, Dementia and its Symptoms are managed by our clinical director, Dr. Tony Aboudib, DC. Dr. Aboudib attended post-graduate studies at Carrick Institute for graduate studies in clinical neuroscience, American Functional Neurology Institute, Functional Medicine University, Institute of Functional Medicine and Kharrazian Institute for graduate studies.
For more information, call 231-421-5213 or visit our website: www.michiganhealthandwellness.com
Alzheimer’s Association, 2021. Alzheimer’s Facts and Figures. Retrieved from www.alz.org.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (April 5, 2019). What is Dementia? Alzheimer’s Disease and Healthy Aging. Retrieved from www.cdc.gov/aging/dementia/index.html.