The second most common type of dementia, Lewy body disease is a progressive form of this common mental health condition that causes the advanced deterioration of mental capabilities. In addition to the general decline of cognitive abilities, Lewy body disease may also cause visual hallucinations, leading to unusual and sometimes uncomfortable behavior. The disease itself is characterized physically by the presence of “Lewy bodies” in the brain. These bodies are clumps of alpha-synuclein and ubiquitin protein located in neurons that have been identified in patients’ brains post-mortem.
Lewy body dementia is characterized functionally by several common symptoms. Generally, Lewy body disease is identified with visual hallucinations – often the first sign of the condition, movement disorders including stiff muscles and a slow or shuffling walk, and poor regulation of bodily functions. Likewise, individuals with Lewy body disease often experience cognitive issues, difficulty sleeping, inattention and depression.
The cause of Lewy body disease is unknown; however, the disease is believed to be connected to Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease. Individuals affected by Lewy body disease generally possess a protein commonly associated with Parkinson’s disease as well as the plaques and tangles in the brain related with Alzheimer’s disease. Also, individuals with Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s possess similar brain compositions as those individuals who have been diagnosed with Lewy body dementia.
A holistic approach to dementia treatment is typically the best option for individuals. Many individuals respond well to therapeutic treatments including music therapy and other recreational therapies including pet therapy and cognitive fitness strategies. Additional options include aromatherapy and herbal supplementation. Lavender and lemon balm can help calm and relax the affected individual and support better cognitive performance. Vitamin B-12 is also known for its ability to support brain function and treat cognitive issues. Chelation therapy also helps many individuals. This can be accomplished by taking MSM daily, omitting sugar from the diet, and drinking plenty of water daily for a period of at least two weeks. This process removes build-up of toxins in the body that may be causing the issue. Ginger root, turmeric, and cayenne are also supplements that support cognitive health and are of help for treating dementia.
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