Medications and the Aging Brain

Even if we’ve taken a certain medicine for years, the aging process can cause our bodies to begin reacting to it in new ways.  Although the changing reactions can be physical, they can also be cognitive. That is, we may notice that the medication affects how we think, understand, learn, plan, and remember.  Because of this potential for a change in the way medicine can affect us, it is important for older adults to discuss their medications and the possible side effects with their health care professionals.

In partnership with scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institutes for Health, ACL has developed a three-part set of materials on medications and the aging brain.  The materials describe the kinds of medicines that affect cognition in older adults, and suggest questions patients can ask their health care professionals. The materials are written in plain language, and are designed for use by staff and volunteers at senior centers, area agencies on aging, health departments, local clinics, and other community organizations. In addition, ACL’s Brain Health Resource contains a wealth of information, some in Spanish, about many other brain health topics.

The Medicine, Age, and Your Brain set includes a power point presentation, a brochure for educators, and a one page handout for consumers.

  • The PowerPoint presentation helps people learn about the impact some medicines can have on an older person’s brain and emphasizes the importance of talking with a doctor about.
  • The Educator Brochure offers additional information for presenters to share with audiences.
  • A one-page handout for the audience covers some medicines’ potential impact on brain health.

Find our more here.

And here.

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