RSS Feed Print
Use of antipsychotic and depression meds in Alzheimers
Posted: Tuesday, August 30, 2016 3:08 PM
Joined: 8/30/2016
Posts: 1

My grandma was recently moved to a elderly psych unit and they are using antipsychotic and depression meds for her aggression and anger what do you know about this?
Lane Simonian
Posted: Wednesday, August 31, 2016 11:46 AM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 5179

This is a very controversial issue, Stacyj.  Some people argue that anti-depressants and especially anti-psychotics should only be used as a last restort.  Certain anti-pyschotics increase the risk of stroke and pneumonia in people with dementia.  On the other hand, some caregivers see at least temporary improvement in loved ones with the use of anti-depressants and anti-psychotics.

A few memory care facilities in Minnesota (Ecumen and English Rose Suites) have dramatically reduced the use of anti-depressant and anti-psychotic medications through detailed attention to their residents and aromatherapy.

In many cases, "psychotic" behavior in individuals with dementia is the result of high levels of stress.  If ways are found to reduce the stress, the behavior improves.