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Thinking outside the "box". Archive in Alzheimer's

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Thinking outside the "box". Archive in Alzheimer's

Posted by Walt Stoll on August 21, 2003 at 16:37:25:

Light, aromatherapy may help dementia patients


CHICAGO, Illinois (Reuters) --Light and aromatherapy can ease the
sleeplessness and agitation common among patients with Alzheimer's
disease and other forms of dementia, British researchers reported.

"[Alzheimer's] patients who sat in front of a bright light box for
two hours each morning for two weeks slept longer and more deeply
than people who sat in front of a dim light for the same period of
time," Harry Allen of the Manchester Royal Infirmary in England told
a medical conference on the elderly this week.

Light therapy improved patients' sleep quality most during the winter
months, when there was less daylight, Allen said at the Congress of
the International Psychogeriatric Association.

The patients' tossing and turning was measured with a wristwatch-
like device called an "actigraph."

An alternative to buying a "light box," which costs around $150, was
to plan patient activities during the brightest parts of the day and
position them facing a bright window when indoors, Allen said.

"Most of us have had the experience of feeling our mood improve when
we are exposed to bright sunlight," Allen said. "Too often we shut
people with dementia up in dark rooms with little opportunity to see
the sun or other bright light, which can make their symptoms worse."

In a four-week study of how aromatherapy can affect elderly dementia
patients, roughly one-third suffered fewer bouts of agitation when
they were rubbed with a lemon balm compared to one in 10 who showed
improvement when rubbed with an odorless sunflower oil.

"Patients exposed to lemon balm also showed significant improvements
in the quality of life, including a decrease in social withdrawal
and an increase in constructive activities," study leader Clive
Ballard of the University of Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne told the
conference.


_____

Copyright 2003 Reuters
.
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast,
rewritten, or redistributed.

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Find this article at:
http://www.cnn.com/2003/HEALTH/conditions/08/20/aromatherapy.reut/ind
ex.html





Re: Thinking outside the "box". Archive in Alzheimer's

Posted by bing on August 21, 2003 at 17:04:54:

In Reply to: Thinking outside the "box". Archive in Alzheimer's posted by Walt Stoll on August 21, 2003 at 16:37:25:

How about spending most part of daytime outdoors to get sunlight? As far as I know, among cultures where the elderly spend most of their waking hours outside, chatting or just sit outside to get the sun in colder seasons, Alzheimer's disease is extremely rare. Just a thought.



Re: Thinking outside the "box". Archive in Alzheimer's

Posted by R. on August 25, 2003 at 19:35:26:

In Reply to: Re: Thinking outside the "box". Archive in Alzheimer's posted by bing on August 21, 2003 at 17:04:54:

There are many more different things in cultures like that, bing.

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