Health care - Treatment and medication - Non-pharmacological treatment options

Frequently asked questions

What complementary or alternative therapies are available? Click for answer

There are a number of other alternative practices such as acupuncture, chiropractic, and naturopathy. Other therapies such as music therapy, pet therapy, recreation therapy, aromatherapy and massage therapy may also be beneficial. If you consider using natural services and products, please keep these things in mind:

  • Natural does not always mean safe
  • Ask for evidence that supports the safety and effectiveness of the therapies or products
  • Understand how herbal remedies may interact with other prescription drugs you are taking. Tell your doctor if you are on any herbal remedies and ask your pharmacist about mixing herbal remedies with the medications you are on
  • Ask about potential risks and side effects

Source: The information above comes from Alzheimer Society of Canada. (2009). Alzheimer's disease: Treatment options. Ontario, Canada: Alzheimer Society of Canada.

What alternative medications are being studied? Click for answer

There are several alternative treatments (herbal, vitamin and dietary supplements) which are promoted as beneficial for people with dementia, including Ginkgo biloba, Huperzine A, ginseng, vitamin B12, coral calcium, coconut oil or cannabis.

Conventional medicine is based on scientific fact which proves that there are benefits to certain treatments. But there has been very little scientific research into complementary or alternative therapies, and so some doctors believe they offer false hope and could be harmful. It is important that you check with your doctor before starting any therapy or trying an alternative remedy.

Source: The information above comes from Guide4Living. (2011). Alternative therapies and treatments - Alzheimer's disease. 

What new research on medications and treatments is being conducted? Click for answer