1. Are there any bad side effects from Alzheimer’s drugs?
A person with Alzheimer's disease may be taking medicines to treat their symptoms and other health problems they have. But when they take many medications at once, there’s a higher chance they’ll have a bad reaction to them. The problems can include confusion, agitation, sleepiness or sleeplessness, mood swings, memory problems, and upset stomach.
Some people who have severe symptoms of Alzheimer's disease -- such as aggressive behavior or hallucinations (seeing, feeling, or hearing things that aren’t there) – may need stronger medicine to keep their problems under control. But some of these drugs can make their other Alzheimer’s symptoms worse. For example:
Some drugs such as tranquilizers can cause confusion, memory trouble, and slowed reactions, which can lead to falls.
Some medicines that treat depression can cause sedation and other side effects.
Some medicines that treat hallucinations can cause sedation, confusion, and drops in blood pressure.
Ask your doctor about the pros and cons of these options. Also, some over-the-counter drugs, including cough and cold remedies and sleep medicines, can have side effects, too. They may also react with other Alzheimer’s meds. A doctor can let you know which ones are safe to take.
Today, there is no cure for Alzheimer's. Researchers are still trying to fully understand how the disease leads to memory loss and other problems with thinking and behavior. They hope to one day reverse those changes to prevent or stop the disease.
But if you or a loved one has Alzheimer’s, there are treatments that can make a difference. Some therapies ease the symptoms and help people do better for longer. Because the disease’s effects change over time, people often need to have their treatments...