Anxiety and depression are quite common in patients with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, particularly for those in the early and middle stages of the disease when they are aware of their declining cognitive functions.
Symptoms of depression look much like the symptoms in people without Alzheimer’s/dementia (apathy, loss of interest in previously enjoyed hobbies and activities, withdrawal, isolation) with a few critical differences. Dementia patients may experience less severe depressive episodes, episodes may come and go, the patients are less likely to talk about being depressed, and they are less likely to commit suicide.
CBT and Alzheimer’s/Dementia Patients
Nearly 50% of Alzheimer’s patients or others suffering from dementia have co-occurring depression and anxiety, both of which can exacerbate the symptoms of dementia and lead to a loss of quality of life. While CBT requires the use of cognition and intellectual functions out of the reach of many dementia patients, some researchers are focusing on adapting CBT for use with this population.
Medication or behavioral therapy?
Low Intensity CBT with Older Adults
The Uses of CBT in Adults with Alzheimer’s Disease or Dementia
How to Adapt CBT for Use in Older Adults
Using CBT for Anxiety in Dementia Patients
CBT with Alzheimer’s Patients and Caregivers
Upcoming Studies Using CBT in Patients with Dementia/Alzheimer’s Disease
Using CBT in Alzheimer’s Patients
Adapting CBT for Alzheimer’s Patients
A Clinician’s Guide to CBT with Older Adults
CBT and Alzheimer’s/Dementia Caregivers
Articles on why CBT is useful for the caregivers of Alzheimer’s patients
Positive Effects of CBT for Caregivers
Reducing Anxiety in Caregivers Using CBT
Using CBT in Alzheimer’s Patients and Caregivers
Much of the information on this page was taken from the Alzheimer’s Association website, and their pages on depression and anxiety