The benefits of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) continue to expand. In addition to the well-known cognitive enhancing effects, recent research has also shown that tDCS can help with depression, schizophrenia, weight loss, and much more.
Now a new study just published in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience shows that tDCS also improves cognition in Alzheimer’s patients [update: full PDF available here].
A group of 34 patients suffering from Alzheimer’s were given a daily treatment of tDCS for 25 minutes, over a period of ten days. Some received “real” tDCS, while others were given a sham version for control purposes.
The patients’ IQs were also tested at the beginning of the treatment, and then again one and two months after the end of the sessions.
There were “significant” improvements in the IQ scores of patients who underwent the real tDCS treatment, and no such improvements in the sham group.
The researchers concluded that repeated sessions of tDCS can improve cognitive function. In the near future, electrical stimulation of this kind may largely replace the need for traditional medicine to treat conditions such as Alzheimer’s. In fact, the latest issue of Scientific American Mind has an article about that very topic.