Therapies to reverse the neurological effects of COVID-19
Transcranial electrical stimulation and cerebral photobiomodulation are highly effective in combating cognitive impairment following recovery from the disease.
Immunological deficiencies, respiratory difficulties, digestive disorders, psycho-emotional symptoms, musculoskeletal and cardiac problems… The biological sequelae caused by COVID-19 affect practically every organ and system in the body, including the brain. As Bruno Ribeiro, head of the Cognitive Development and Brain Stimulation Unit at SHA Wellness Clinic, tells us, “many people who have already overcome the disease continue to present impaired cognitive capacity after the initial recovery. The most significant impairments are mental fog, difficulty in concentrating and paying attention, slowed thoughts and memory problems”.
As the doctor explains, “”since it’s very recent, we still don’t know much about the disease, although we are gradually deciphering the functioning of the mechanisms that allow COVID-19 to access the brain. We’recurrently working on two hypotheses. The first suggests that the virus can reach the brain via the circulatory system, despite the fact that the blood-brain barrier ensures that blood circulating in the vessels and capillaries doesn’t communicate with neurons. Therefore, it is believed that the virus attacks glial cells, which act as a bridge and are responsible for carrying nutrients and oxygen to the neurons and depositing metabolic waste into the bloodstream for its removal from the body. The second hypothesis studies the pituitary gland, which indirectly regulates cortisol, and the nerves in the nose as the input pathway. Hence, the sense of smell can sometimes be temporarily lost. The cells that detect odours are neuronal cells and some of their receptors are located in the nose, but at the same time they’re connected to certain areas of the brain, such as the olfactory bulb. What we do know for sure is that if there is a chronic inflammatory process, the coronavirus makes it worse”.
To reverse these repercussions and recover optimal neurological function, the Post-COVID programme (https://shawellnessclinic.com/es/post-covid/) has a range of therapies and treatments that are customised to meet the specific needs of each guest. “On the cognitive and psychological side, it’s essential to learn how to manage and control stress, because in this way we reduce inflammatory processes. If the guest is down in the dumps, we recommend transcranial electrical stimulation; if they are low on energy, brain photobiomodulation; and in more complex cases, we use immunotherapy to further modulate the inflammatory processes. Of course, always with the help of psychotherapy”, Bruno concludes.