Allergy Meds increase Risk of Dementia

Do you take Anticholinergics regularly? You may be increasing your risk for developing Dementia, according to this study.

What are anticholinergics? These are medications used to relieve asthma attacks and reduce spasm of smooth muscle tissue – like the muscles that make up your airways, digestive tract or urinary system.

Asthmatics regularly use anticholinergics like Benadryl, Phenergan or Atrovent to help relieve bronchial spasm, dry up a runny nose and reduce histamine reactions to allergens like pollens.

But caution is advised in over using such medications as their long term use is problematic. Chronic Anticholinergic use and the link to dementia is not deeply understood, but it is now accepted that using these medications chronically for several years substantially increases risks of Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease.

Elder patients should therefore be discouraged from using anticholinergics wherever possible, and especially if they are medicated for Parkinsons, Alzheimers, or other chronic illnesses.

Long Acting Anti-Muscarine drugs (LAMA’s) are new medicines that are also being indicated for chronic asthma and COPD.

Care and caution is advised when using any asthma medication, but in the case of LAMA’s we may still be unaware of what long term side effects may be.

Because LAMA’s don’t only target lungs, their long term effects may be discovered in other organs like the heart or urinary tract.

Those using chronic anticholinergic asthma meds may be interested to learn that Buteyko interventions were able to control asthma symptoms by up to 79% (R.Cowie et al, Calgary, Canada, 2008) and Buteyko techniques assisted to maintain true control while allowing for symptomatic medicine reductions over time. Newer studies from Egypt suggest that Buteyko interventions were able to improve lung function over time.

© Buteyko South Africa

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