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Posts Tagged ‘causes of dementia’

Can B12 deficiency Cause Dementia? Some Helpful Facts

Friday, April 12th, 2013



Dementia is not an illness, but rather a set of conditions that cause cognitive impairment. There are several causes of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, and reversible vitamin B12 deficiency.

Can B12 deficiency Cause Dementia? Some Helpful Facts- B12 Patch

Listed below are common causes of reversible dementia, including vitamin B12 deficiency.

Dementia symptoms

There are several forms of dementia; irreversible dementia caused by Alzheimer’s disease and treatable dementia-like conditions caused by vitamin B12 deficiency, depression, and medication overuse.

Symptoms of dementia, as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders IV (DSM-IV) include:

• Memory loss
• Aphasia- language problems, loss of vocabulary
• Apraxia- difficulty directing arm and leg movements
• Agnosia- inability to recognize once-familiar faces and objects, impaired visual perception
• Impaired executive functioning, decision making
• Decline in social behaviors

Types of dementia

Alzheimer’s disease is the most serious form of dementia, and also the most common; it is an incurable illness that causes brain atrophy, shrinking of the brain. Aside from dementia, symptoms of Alzheimer’s may include paranoia, mood swings, depression, and aggression.

Alzheimer’s usually strikes in old age, but not always; some people may notice the signs of dementia as early as their 40s and 50s.

Vascular dementia is cognitive impairment caused by reduced or blocked oxygen supplies to the brain, usually because of a stroke. Symptoms include blindness, disorientation, vertigo, and speech difficulties. After Alzheimer’s, vascular cognitive impairment (VCI) is the second-most common type of dementia.

Depression can also simulate symptoms of dementia in elderly individuals, resulting in a high rate of misdiagnosis. Depressed senior citizens may experience symptoms of confusion, memory problems, difficulty concentrating, and fatigue that are easily treatable with psychiatric care.

Vitamin B12 deficiency dementia may result from poor red blood cell circulation, as decreased hemoglobin caused by megaloblastic anemia limits the amount of oxygen supplies to the brain.

In addition to memory loss, confusion, and slow thinking, other symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency may include poor hand-eye coordination, depression, anxiety, fatigue, heart palpitations, and frequent numbness and pain in the extremities.

Unlike age-related dementia, memory loss from vitamin B12 deficiency can be reversed easily with routine vitamin B12 supplementation.

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Like this? Read more:

Prevent Dementia: 12 Natural Vitamins and Herbs

Aging begins at 45- Tips on how to Prevent Early Memory Loss

Here’s Your Brain on B12 Deficiency- Memory Loss and Aging


Diagnostic Procedures- Alzheimer’s Association

Image courtesy of stockimages/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Can Vitamin B12 Deficiency cause Dementia?

Wednesday, February 1st, 2012



Everybody knows that Alzheimer’s disease is a form of dementia that occurs among the elderly, but did you know that severe memory loss from vitamin B12 deficiency can happen, regardless of your age?  Find out how vitamin B12 deficiency affects brain health.


What is dementia?

Dementia is a brain disorder that causes you to lose thinking skills like memory, reasoning, language, and social awareness.  Dementia is a progressive condition- the symptoms of dementia only worsen with time.  

Degenerative dementia is permanent, meaning that the brain damage that caused dementia is irreversible. Still, some kinds of dementia can be reversed if caught in time; such is the case with a brain tumor.  

Alzheimer’s disease is one of the most notable types of degenerative dementia.

Adult ADHD Could Lead to Dementia

What are the symptoms of dementia?


The most common symptoms of dementia are:

  • Short-term memory loss: While dementia patients don’t usually have difficulty remembering things from their childhood with crystal-clear vision, they are likely to forget messages, conversations, or doctor’s appointments from the previous day…or hour.
  • Moodiness: Alzheimer’s disease patients may shift through moods in the blink of an eye- one minute content, the next minute expressing deep anger, and rage.  Paranoia and depression are common traits of elderly individuals suffering from dementia.  Often, people with dementia lose interest in things like hobbies and social clubs that they used to enjoy.  In some cases, they may become antisocial and exhibit bad behavior in public.
  • Difficulty communicating: People with dementia tend to have circular conversations, immediately forgetting what they spoke of a moment ago, and returning to the same topic.  They also have trouble recalling everyday words, as their vocabulary skills have decreased significantly. 
  • Decreased perception skills: Dementia patients have great difficulty understanding new or foreign concepts.
  • Inability to multi-task
  • Cognitive decline: Senior citizens with dementia have trouble thinking abstractly, figuring amounts, and using logic.
  • Tendency to lose things
  • Hallucinations
  • Loss of self-awareness

Aging begins at 45- Tips on how to Prevent Early Memory Loss

What causes dementia?


As there are many different types of dementia, there are also various causes and correlations, as well.

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Stroke (Vascular dementia)
  • Dementia with Lewy bodies
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Pick’s disease
  • Progressive supranuclear palsy
  • Brain tumor
  • Head injury
  • Chronic alcoholism
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency (Pernicious anemia)
  • Certain cholesterol-lowering medications

How do doctors diagnose dementia?


If your doctor suspects dementia, he will have to review the patient’s medical history and order various physical exams before he diagnoses dementia.  Additionally, any underlying medical conditions that may contribute to dementia symptoms will be reviewed, such as low levels of vitamin B12 or history of depression.

The most common tests used to diagnose dementia are:

  • Neurological exam (mental status examination)
  • MRI brain scan
  • Vitamin B12 blood test
  • Ammonia blood test
  • Blood chemistry test
  • Thyroid test
  • Toxicology screening for alcohol
  • Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis
  • Electroencephalograph (EEG)
  • Head CT
  • Urinalysis

Treatments for dementia

Depending on the cause of dementia, your physician might prescribe one of the following treatments for dementia:

  • Vitamin B12 supplements, if vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms are the cause of dementia.
  • Acetyl cholinesterase inhibitor, for dementia with Lewy bodies
  • Antipsychotics
  • Mood stabilizers
  • Stimulants
  • Donepezil (Aricept)
  • Rivastigmine (Exelon)
  • Galantamine (Razadyne/Reminyl)
  • Memantine (Namenda)

Brainy People are high on B12, according to Brain Health Study

Please tell us…

Do you or a family member suffer from short-term memory loss, chronic fatigue, or depression and anxiety? You could be suffering from B12 deficiency

Other symptoms of low B12 levels include painful tingling or numbness in hands and feet, sore red tongue, unusual clumsiness, and tinnitus ear ringing.

Please share your experiences with our community, and let us know if you found this article helpful.

Thanks for sharing!

Read more about vitamin B12 and the brain:

Here’s Your Brain on B12 Deficiency- Memory Loss and Aging

How to keep Vitamin B12 Deficiency from Shrinking your Brain

Vitamin B12- How much do you need?


Dementia- PubMed Health

What is dementia?  Alzheimer’s Society

Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet: Vitamin B12

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digital cat , Rosino, GabrielaP93, Colin_K

12 Ways to Avoid Alzheimer’s Disease

Tuesday, September 13th, 2011



You can’t stop the aging process, but you can delay symptoms of aging, including Alzheimer’s disease in the beginning stages.


For now, you can keep wearing deodorant

Remember when people thought that Alzheimer’s disease was caused by aluminum in underarm deodorant?  Well, thank goodness the Alzheimer’s Association has debunked that myth.  But one thing we do know for certain: by leading a healthy lifestyle, you have the ability to prevent early onset dementia, and delay the symptoms of memory loss in the elderly.

Live healthy, live longer


Here are 12 practical healthy living tips that scientists believe help to prevent the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease:

  1. Quit smoking. According to research, smoking cigarettes increases your chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease, even more than lack of exercise.
  2. Lose Weight. People who gain substantial weight in their 40’s are more likely to suffer dementia earlier than their thinner peers are.
  3. Avoid type 2 Diabetes. Diabetics who fail to maintain their blood-sugar levels are more likely to experience Alzheimer’s disease symptoms than non-diabetics are.
  4. Don’t worry about it. Stress, anxiety, and depression are common psychological factors that contribute to the onset of dementia.  If you suffer the loss of a loved one, or experience any other trauma, it’s crucial that you seek counseling.
  5. Work your body. Exercise is one of the greatest cures for Alzheimer’s disease, according to a study published by The National Academy of Sciences.
  6. Work your noodle. The more you use your brain, the longer it stays in tip-top condition.  According to a study by York University, bilingual individuals have greater control over the executive control center of the brain, the part responsible for time-awareness, formulation of plans, problem solving, and self-awareness.  As a result, bilingual Alzheimer’s patients experience the first signs of dementia approximately 5 years later than non-bilingual adults.
  7. Get to know your neighbors. A study by Rush Medical School found that elderly people with the greatest “lifespace” fared better than most in regard to Alzheimer’s disease symptoms.  Basically, people go out for walks, mingle with others, and lead a healthy social life are 75% less likely to suffer from early onset dementia than those who remain indoors all day.
  8. Avoid high voltage. Although living by a low-voltage power line is not dangerous, a study conducted in Switzerland confirms that proximity to a 220-380 kV power line increases your chances of getting Alzheimer’s by over 200%.
  9. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association published a report proving that senior citizens who eat a diet of vitamin-enriched fruits and vegetables receive the most cognitive health benefits, compared to peers who don’t eat fresh plant-based foods every day.
  10. Increase Omega-3, but decrease Omega-6. Your brain loves Omega-3 fatty acids, and absorbs it better than other oils.  Omega-3 oils from fish, flax seeds, and walnuts benefits brain health, while vegetable oils that contain Omega-6 have the opposite effect; studies by the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Diseases in San Francisco suggest that Omega-6 oils may affect incidences of Alzheimer’s disease.
  11. Protect your cranium. This seems like common sense, but in your old age, it is more important than ever to avoid falls that may lead to head injuries, which often lead to dementia in the elderly.
  12. Increase vitamin B12 intake. A high correlation exists between vitamin B12 deficiency and severe memory loss.  Vitamin B12 is beneficial for nervous system health and cognitive integrity. To prevent vitamin B12 deficiency, the elderly should include vitamin B12 supplements in their daily regimen.


Related reading:

Raise your IQ with Sudoku- 10 Free Online Games for Brains

Ten Bites to Better Brain Power

Adult ADHD Could Lead to Dementia

Can Aerobics Cure Alzheimer’s Disease?

FDA Approves Brain Scan to Detect Alzheimer’s Disease

Feed your Brain Something You’ll never Forget


Alzheimer’s Prevention – Lifestyle Changes That Protect the Brain – Health Tip – RealAge

Want to Avoid Alzheimer’s? Here’s How- FOX News

Is This Another Way to Avoid Alzheimer’s? Psychology Today

Alzheimer’s Association- Myths

Images courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Bilingual Alzheimer’s Patients Fare Better Than Most

Friday, February 25th, 2011

Do you speak more than one language? A recent study shows that multilingualism is healthy for the brain.

Psychologist Ellen Bialystok of York University, Toronto recently conducted a study which focused on patients of  Alzheimer’s disease.  Out of the 450 test subjects, approximately half were bilingual, while the other half only spoke their Mother tongue.

The bilingual patients of Alzheimer’s suffered the same symptoms of brain deterioration as the patients who spoke only one language.  However, the onset of Alzheimer’s began 4-5 years later in life for the patients who were fluent in two languages than it did for the senior citizens who were only raised with one.

Dr. Bialystok explained it like this: the ability to speak fluently in more than one language enabled one focus group of seniors to cope with the symptoms of Alzheimer’s better than the test subjects who did not have the advantage of multi-language fluency. As a result, bilingual Alzheimer’s patients who are in the onset of the disease tend to be about 5 years older than early-stage patients who have been exposed to only one language.

FDA Approves Brain Scan to DetectAlzheimer’s Disease.

Her findings were presented at a meeting for the American Association for the Advancement of Science and was published in Neurology, 11/09/10.

Researchers believe that bilingual patients of Alzheimer’s are more functional than monolingual patients because of a difference in their brain makeup.  The ability to speak more than one language stems from a skill which employs the executive control system or our brains; because bilingual people exercise that brain function more often they are less likely to succumb to the symptoms of dementia.

The executive control center of the brain is essential for the following skills:

  • Self-Evaluation
  • Planning
  • Initiation
  • Time-Awareness
  • Self-Correction
  • Problem Solving

“It’s not that being bilingual prevents the disease,” explains Bialystok. “Instead, it allows those who develop Alzheimer’s to deal with it better.”

Source: Huffington Post

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