Emerging Complementary and Integrative Therapies for Geriatric Mental Health

Author: Sarah A Nguyen1, Helen LAvretsky1
Author Information:
1 Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles; 760 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90095 USA.
Conference/Journal: Curr Treat Options Psychiatry
Date published: 2020 Sep 1
Other: Special Notes: doi: 10.1007/s40501-020-00229-5. , Word Count: 211

The use of complementary and integrative medicine (CIM) is on the rise among diverse populations of older adults in the USA. CIM is commonly perceived as safer, less expensive, and more culturally acceptable. There is a growing body of evidence to support the use of CIM, especially mind-body therapies, diet and nutritional supplements used for mental disorders of aging.

Recent findings:
We summarize the results of the recent clinical trials and meta-analyses that provide the evidence for the role of CIM in treating older adults with mood or cognitive disorders that includes the use of diet and supplements, and mind-body therapies.

Dietary and mind-body therapies have become increasingly popular and show the strongest evidence of efficacy for mood and cognitive disorders. Although the use of vitamins and supplements is the most popular CIM practice, only mixed evidence supports their use with additional concerns for herb (supplement)-drug interactions. Despite increasing use of CIM by the general population, information to guide clinicians providing care for older adults remains limited with variable scientific rigor of the available RCTs for a large number of commonly used CIM interventions for the mental health of older adults.

Keywords: Anxiety; Cognition; Complementary, alternative, integrative medicine; Geriatric depression.

PMID: 32904865 PMCID: PMC7458879 DOI: 10.1007/s40501-020-00229-5