This large study in the UK showed that those who had been prescribed “anti-cholinergic” medicines either for depression OR for bladder conditions had more than a 30% increase in subsequent dementia. While it is possible that the drugs did not cause the dementia, for example perhaps the depressed patients who got the drugs were having depression as a first stage of dementia, in fact it is very likely that the drugs did indeed cause the dementia because the dementia occurred even in patients without prior depression who had been prescribed the drugs only for bladder problems.
This points out once again that many problems with drugs are not seen until years later and drugs should not be used for any problem where other methods may be effective. For example, as will be described in a subsequent post, exercise is an excellent means of elevating mood. And simply working through depression without medicines is almost always preferable.