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Dementia

Scottsdale Private Physicians, LLC

Family Practice & Internal Medicine Physicians located in Scottsdale, AZ

Dementia is a distressing symptom of several neurological conditions, including Alzheimer's disease. If you or a loved one has dementia, Helene Wechsler, MD, and Scott L. Bernstein, MD, at Scottsdale Private Physicians, LLC, can help. They provide expert assessment and treatment for dementia patients, including the Bredesen Protocol, a holistic approach to dementia care. Find out how to benefit from exceptional dementia care by calling the Scottsdale, Arizona office nearest you or by booking an appointment online.

Dementia Q & A

What is dementia?

Dementia is a collective term for certain symptoms typical of cognitive decline, which could occur as a result of a number of different conditions. Common symptoms of dementia include:

  • Memory loss
  • Confusion and agitation
  • Difficulties communicating
  • Loss of organizational skills
  • Problems with reasoning and problem-solving
  • Inability to manage complex or challenging tasks
  • Disorientation
  • Personality changes
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Inappropriate behavior
  • Paranoia and hallucinations

 

As the disease that's causing your dementia progresses, the symptoms worsen, too. Eventually, you don’t even recognize people you know well or remember recent events. Some people with dementia lose physical abilities, leaving them unable to walk or even swallow.

What causes dementia?

Dementia develops when there's damage to certain nerve cells in your brain. The effects of dementia can vary depending on which part of your brain has nerve cell damage. Diseases that can lead to this damage include:

  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Lewy body dementia
  • Vascular dementia
  • Frontotemporal dementia
  • Mixed dementia (a combination of conditions)

 

Dementia can also occur as a complication of serious brain injuries or conditions like Huntington's disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, and Parkinson's disease.

These causes of dementia are incurable. However, if you develop dementia because of an endocrine abnormality, immune disorder, metabolic problem, or infection, it may be reversible. Treatment involves addressing the underlying cause of your problem.

How is incurable dementia treated?

At Scottsdale Private Physicians, LLC, both Dr. Wechsler and Dr. Bernstein treat patients with dementia. They may prescribe medications like cholinesterase inhibitors and memantine to improve your brain function and ease your symptoms, and specific medicines to help with problems like agitation, depression, and difficulty sleeping.

A safe home environment in quiet surroundings with a familiar routine is usually best for anyone with dementia. Dr. Wechsler and Dr. Bernstein can offer advice on this as well as practical aspects like coping strategies. Therapeutic interventions like music and art therapies also form a vital part of dementia treatment.

Dr. Wechsler is a trained practitioner in the Bredesen Protocol for the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's dementia. The Bredesen Protocol combines a detailed physical exam, cognitive assessment, and laboratory testing with dietary and lifestyle modifications, including smoking cessation, exercise, maximizing cardiovascular health, maintaining adequate sleep, and stress reduction techniques like meditation. Additionally, certain nutritional supplements or medications are prescribed.

To benefit from Dr. Wechsler and Dr. Bernstein's experience with treating dementia, call Scottsdale Private Physicians, LLC, today or book an appointment online.