Common Drugs Linked to Cognitive Decline
Medications with anticholinergic activity, which include many drugs taken by older adults, cause cognitive impairment. Over the counter sleeping aids such as Excedrin PM, Nytol, Sominex, Tylenol PM, and Unisom are especially problematic. Other drugs include Paxil, Detol, Demerol, and Elavil. Anticholinergics work by blocking the brain's neurotransmitter, acetylcholine.
In a study published in the June 24, 2011 issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, researchers studied the impact of these medications on 13,000 people over the age of 65 by measursing tests in cognitive function of those taking anticholinergic drugs and those not. The results were striking.
Far too many doctors recommend these drugs and don't realize their impact.