This article has been reviewed and fact checked by Dr. Rodney Soto, M.D. who is a board-certified doctor in Neurology and Holistic Medicine by the American Board of Holistic and Integrative Medicine.
- Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) may be the second step in the progression toward dementia-related diseases
- MCI involves intermittent difficulty with memory, language and self-expression
- Mild Cognitive Impairment can inhibit a person’s quality of life and sense of freedom and autonomy
- As with any brain health issue, early intervention is key to reversing Mild Cognitive Impairment before it worsens
- Those suffering from MCI have effective alternative treatment options available outside of conventional medicine
What Is Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)?
When our cognition is impaired we may have difficulty remembering if we took a medication, performed a task, how to get to places we are typically familiar with, and how to read a recipe or balance a checkbook. It can make us question ourselves and our ability to function in the world.
Mild Cognitive Impairment may be related to changes in the brain and aging. In addition, it may also be a related symptom of anxiety or depression, and can also be the result of a brain injury. It may also be the result of other unsuspected contributory factors which we’ll discuss below.
In 2009, five states assessed how cognitive impairment was affecting their residents. Data showed that in these states 9 to 15% of adults aged 50 and older suffered from MCI.1
Symptoms of Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)
We know that cognition is the brain’s ability to learn and remember and it affects how we decipher the importance of what’s coming at us, how we manage everyday tasks, remember events and appointments, learn new things, and make decisions.
The symptoms of Mild Cognitive Impairment are not necessarily a normal part of aging and there are things we can do to improve cognition naturally.
Common Symptoms of MCI
- Increased forgetfulness around:
- where you put things
- if you completed a task (i.e. repeating something because you’re not sure if you did it)
- what you said or asked in a conversation
- if you took medication or a supplement
- Difficulty following directions for a recipe or other task
- Becoming overwhelmed by planning or making decisions
- Difficulty getting to places you didn’t have trouble with before
- Mental confusion
- Difficulty expressing your thoughts and feelings
- Repeating a sentence or a story you just told
- Becoming confused about where you are
- Increasing anxiety
- Increasing irritability
- Unexplained or sudden aggression
- Loss of interest in activities
Conventional Treatment for MCI
Although conventional healthcare professionals do not have a set standard for diagnosing Mild Cognitive Impairment, the National Institute on Aging and Alzheimer’s Association have put forth the following diagnostic criteria:4
- An observed change in cognition by the patient, knowledgeable observer, or professional observation
- Evidence of impairment from cognitive testing results of the cognitive domains
- Independence is still maintained even with the impairment
- No significant impairment as is present with dementia
Some clinicians may include blood tests, brain imaging, or a neurological exam to rule out any other causes of cognitive impairment such as an imbalance, tumor, autoimmune disease or other contributing factor.
As with Subjective Cognitive Decline, MCI may be treated with Alzheimer’s drugs. In addition, professionals may treat for other causes of impairment such as anxiety, depression, or high blood pressure. Patients may also be advised as to changes regarding exercise, mental activity, and socialization.
At LifeWorks Wellness Center, we believe that these treatments do not really address the underlying factors and causes of the condition and we feel there are much better ways to approach treatment using a whole-body approach.
Alternative Treatment for MCI
Instead of thinking of MCI or any cognitive issues as a fixed, static condition, we look at it as a deterioration of multiple bodily systems and functions, which combined create a variety of symptoms which have been labeled as “MCI”.
When the body has been chronically overwhelmed or unable to keep up with normal maintenance and repair functions, due to some underlying factor (infection, toxicity, pathogen, an autoimmune condition, etc.) it will start to deteriorate and malfunction over time. These hidden factors are sidelining and diverting your body’s available resources and energy into trying to cope with these hidden factors and that sets the stage for a disease process to take hold.
Our approach is based on locating and treating these hidden underlying factors. This approach opens the door to more treatment vectors to address and correct, which eliminates these hidden burdens and restores energy, immune and neurological function, thereby releasing the full miraculous healing power of the human body. And that’s why we see amazing health progress with patients and even recoveries using this approach.
Looking for Underlying Factors
We use both conventional and alternative methods to locate these contributory factors. Our testing may include one or more of the following:
- Testing for heavy metal toxicity
- Testing for inflammatory markers
- Testing for autoimmune conditions
- Testing for food allergies
- Testing for Leaky Gut Syndrome
- Testing for Lyme disease
- CNS neurocognitive test - assesses the neurocognitive status of the patient including motor skills and performance, memory, attention, and executive functioning.
- MRI with volumetrics - assesses neurodegeneration even at the early stages.
- MoCA cognitive assessment - reveals information on cognitive functioning.
- Vascular health assessment - shows symptoms of heart and vascular disease and the status of the patient’s blood circulation and blood pressure
- Nutritional & dietary deficiency testing
- Testing of neurotransmitters, hormones, minerals, essential fatty acids, and other nutritional markers.
Once all the necessary diagnostics are completed, our team of doctors will formulate a treatment program tailor-made for the patient.
Treatment Interventions for Mild Cognitive Impairment
LifeWorks Wellness Center offers a variety of alternative treatments and therapies for Mild Cognitive Impairment. By taking a proactive approach and using these integrative treatment therapies, we can start to address the underlying causes and contributory factors that lead to MCI.
The following is a list of treatments and therapies we may recommend to improve brain health and cognitive function depending on the results of your lab work and examination:
- Repairing Gut Issues - gut issues like Leaky Gut Syndrome are common triggers for autoimmunity and inflammation and often lead to cognitive issues.
- Addressing Inflammation - We test and treat systemic inflammation, infections, gut issues, other causes of inflammation.
- Food Allergy Treatment - food allergies can trigger inflammation and autoimmune conditions which can lead to cognitive impairment.
- Autoimmune Treatment - autoimmunity is where the body is attacking itself in some way, leading to inflammation and cognitive issues. It often goes undetected and unsuspected.
- Lyme Disease Resolution - if labs come back positive for Lyme we will treat it. Lyme disease can produce debilitating cognitive issues and brain fog
- Dietary and Nutritional Deficiencies - clearing up nutritional deficiencies, supporting the body with the right nutraceuticals to improve brain health including macro/micronutrients, minerals, hormones, neurotransmitters, essential fatty acids, etc.
- Controlling Blood Pressure - keeping blood pressure in a healthy range has been shown to reduce the symptoms of cognitive decline.
- Enhanced External Counterpulsation - increases blood flow and circulation
- Plasmapheresis - separates the plasma from the blood where it is treated and returned to the body.
- Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) - delivers pure oxygen to the patient in a pressurized chamber allowing the lungs to take in more oxygen than normal. This fills the blood with oxygen which can fight bacteria and promote healing.
- Vielight NeURO - delivers photons to a light-sensitive enzyme in the mitochondria which is known to trigger self-repair mechanisms in the cells, enhance cognition, and protect cell neurons.
- Pulsed Electromagnetic Field (PEMF) Technology - The emission of electromagnetic waves to stimulate the body’s own healing properties
- Celergen - This is an anti-aging cell therapy supplement that promotes cell renewal and stimulation.
- Peptide therapy - This therapy utilizes specific chains of amino acids called peptides to signal cells to turn on or turn off certain functions. This works to help regulate and rejuvenate neuroendocrine-immune function.
- BrainHQ - This system of brain training exercises Improves brain health.
- Exosome Therapy - a peptide therapy using cell-derived nanoparticles which play a vital role in cell-to-cell communication. They help regulate physiological processes and regenerate older cells by exposing them to exosomes from younger stem cells.
- BrainTap - tapping into specific brainwave states, BrainTap helps to reboot and revitalize the brain, promotes relaxation, and reduces stress on the body and mind.
- Intermittent fasting - through intermittent fasting the body is able to take periodic breaks from digestion so the body can focus all its resources on healing.
- Health Coaching - helps patients keep track of their nutrition, exercise, supplements, and other suggested changes.
Treating Mild Cognitive Impairment
We firmly believe that health conditions such as Mild Cognitive Impairment and dementia-related diseases are preventable and in many cases are reversible.
We believe that we must address the person as a whole since every function of the body and mind are interconnected. By addressing the health of the body we can improve our brain health and vice versa.
We approach illness from a patient-centered, science-backed vantage point to empower patients and their bodies to address the underlying causes of disease and improve their overall health, body and mind. This, in turn, will improve their quality of life.
Contact Us About MCI
If you or someone you know is suffering from Mild Cognitive Impairment, we would love to share our natural and alternative treatments with you. Early intervention can help people prevent dementia-related diseases and live a more fulfilling, healthy life.
Dr. Rodney Soto is highly trained and Board Certified in Neurology and Holistic Medicine. Patients travel from all over the world to see our specialists and heal naturally.
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Cognitive Impairment: A Call for Action, Now!
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Alzheimer’s Disease and Healthy Aging, Accelerating Risk Reduction and Promoting Brain Health, July 2019.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Alzheimer’s Disease and Healthy Aging, Subjective Cognitive Decline--A Public Health Issue, February 2019.
- National Institutes of Health, US National Library of Medicine, JAMA, 2014 Dec 17, The Diagnosis and Management of Mild Cognitive Impairment: A Clinical Review, Source document: The diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment due to Alzheimer's disease: recommendations from the National Institute on Aging-Alzheimer's Association workgroups on diagnostic guidelines for Alzheimer's disease, Alzheimers Dementia, 2011 May.
*Disclaimer: Individual patient results may vary based on a patient's medical history and other factors.