About 50 million people worldwide are living with dementia. The World Health Organization estimates that additional 10 million new cases will be identified each year.
If you care for a senior loved one who has dementia, you may be concerned about their prognosis. Read this article to understand this condition better.
Although there have been isolated reports of recovery from dementia, such reports are rare. Dementia currently has no treatment options. And, it’s highly doubtful that there will be a single treatment for the many forms of dementia as there are so many different causes.
A diagnosis of dementia does not, however, indicate that your loved one will suddenly lose their memory. You may do many things to aid a loved one with dementia. These include taking natural supplements and practicing yoga or meditation.
Read on to learn how yoga and meditation benefit people with Alzheimer’s.
Benefits Of Yoga And Meditation For The People With Alzheimer’s
Stress hormones cause inflammation, which damages crucial brain structures, including the hippocampus. This, in turn, affects memory and cognition. A decrease in stress hormones within the body has been linked to the practice of yoga and meditation.
Both yoga and meditation have been shown to improve brain health by encouraging the growth of new connections. Also, a growing body of research demonstrates that regular meditation and yoga practice improves brain function and mental agility.
Yoga has several benefits for those with Alzheimer’s, including the following:
- Dementia and Alzheimer’s patients can benefit from yoga by improving neuroplasticity. This will help in making new connections.
- People with Alzheimer’s disease can delay and even reverse the physical decline that comes with the condition by practicing yoga. In turn, this enhances their health and longevity.
- Yoga’s stress-relieving benefits extend to both the caregiver and the person receiving care. So it’s good practice to perform together.
- When they practice yoga together, it helps them bond and learn to trust one another.
- Practicing yoga regularly can boost your disposition, sense of self-awareness, ability to concentrate, and general well-being. This is a perfect list of advantages for those with Alzheimer’s!
Meditation helps people with Alzheimer’s disease because:
- They feel less anxious as a result. At certain points in the course of Alzheimer’s, people experience extreme anxiety. It’s important to remember that stress affects both the caregiver and the client. It’s possible that meditating on these matters will be quite helpful.
- Inflammation and cortisol production is lowered, both of which are triggered by stress and are responsible for various health problems.
- It aids in concentration, memory, and other mental processes. Alzheimer’s patients can retain their memory and cognitive abilities through meditation.
- Because it increases the amount of blood that flows to the brain, it makes it easier for the brain to function and remember things. As an added bonus, meditation encourages the growth of new neural connections by activating various regions of the brain.
Best Yoga Practices for People with Alzheimer’s
Yoga and meditation can help slow or even stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease in those who start showing symptoms at a young age. So let’s look at the types of yoga that have shown the most promise for those with Alzheimer’s.
The phrase “chair yoga” describes a wide variety of yoga-based practices that modify classic yoga postures so that they can be carried out in a sitting position instead of standing.
If you are unable to stand for long periods of time, have limited mobility, or need a little break from your desk job, you can still practice yoga with these adaptations.
Yin yoga is a meditative kind of yoga in which you hold passive positions and stretch for several minutes. It’s a quiet, contemplative activity that’s great for persons with Alzheimer’s disease, injuries, older athletes, or stiffness.
Most people’s mental image of yoga is that of Hatha yoga. The tempo of a hatha yoga session varies depending on the teacher, but students may expect to move at a steady, albeit slow, pace.
Hatha yoga, which is not a sort of restorative yoga, is beneficial for seniors who are still active and healthy.
So, yoga and meditation may have a great deal to offer persons with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. They may also provide many benefits to their caregivers.
Because of our culture’s emphasis on youth and productivity, seniors are often disregarded. Thus, their value is highly underestimated.
Bringing yoga and meditation to this demographic is a wonderful gift that can have far-reaching benefits:
- Stress reduction
- Memory enhancement
- Slowed cognitive decline
- Alleviated sadness
- Calmed hyperarousal
- Strengthened sense of self-worth