Welcome to Doctor Dementia’s blog

You can read my posts by category, or simply scroll down the page to read the latest posts.

Categories:

  • Socialization – posts about the important adventures of socializing
  • Vacation – posts about traveling with dementia
  • Education – educational information about dementia
  • Care – posts about caring and being a care partner
  • Gerontechnology – posts about technologies for aging and older adults, welfare technology, health technology, etc.
  • Health – information about maintaining and promoting a healthy lifestyle
  • Inspiration – posts to get you excited about life
  • Reviews – the opinions of Doctor Dementia
  • Research Explained – explaining research in a way that’s easy to understand
  • Dementia in Denmark – about dementia in Denmark
  • På dansk – Indlæg på dansk (blog posts in Danish)
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Oct. 18 Webinar on Role Changes

Webinar: Role Changes and Reversals

Caregivers often feel like they are caring for a child rather than their spouse or parent. This dialogue will uncover the role changes that people experience as they shift from care partners to caregivers. This Dementia Dialogues webinar explores how to manage the feelings that accompany the changes.

  • Wednesday, October 18th, 3-4 PM Eastern (12-1 PM Pacific/ Arizona, 1-2 PM Mountain, 2-3 PM Central)
  • Can’t make it to the live webinar? Don’t worry! Just register as if you will attend and we will send you a recording that you can view at your convenience
  • Sign up here

For those who prefer to join by phone, we also offer an audio version of the Dementia Dialogues webinars. Email bannerresearch@bannerhealth.com for details.

Thank you again for being a part of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry, and thank you for all you do to care for someone with Alzheimer’s.

An Interview with Stephen Johnston: Tech and Aging Innovator

Check out my interview with Aging2.0 co-founder Stephen Johnston on bridging innovation and aging!

GLOBAL HEALTH AGING

Innovating services for aging adults means bringing together different perspectives and aligning common marketing goals which typically do not overlap. This is what Aging2.0 co-founder Stephen Johnston set out to do when he launched an innovation network that would be global, inter-generational, and interdisciplinary.

Several years ago, Johnston had a light-bulb moment when transitioning from the mobile industry to health services innovation. He saw an opportunity to bridge entrepreneurship, technology, and aging to bring people together and meet real-life needs. Johnston is also passionate about strengthening communities to have sustainable impact.

Aging2.0 is an innovation network focused on technologies specifically for aging adults (gerontechnology). The network supports innovators and entrepreneurs dedicated to challenges and opportunities affecting over one billion older adults worldwide. It was founded by Stephen Johnston and Katy Fike in 2012, with headquarters in San Francisco, and has a global footprint in over 20 countries.

Their network includes some…

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Demantec

Demantec er et treårigt tværregionalt samarbejdsprojekt mellem Danmark og Tyskland, som udvikler og afprøver sundheds- og velfærdsteknologier målrettet mennesker med demens. Målet er at skabe bedre plejetilbud til demente ved at tilpasse, sammenkoble og videreudvikle eksisterende teknologier, så de imødekommer de særlige udfordringer, der er forbundet med en demensdiagnose.

Læse mere: Demantec

eHealth and public health – a beautiful marriage

A little bit about eHealth Week 2017, which the World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe (and your favorite eHealth consultant) collaborated in organizing 🙂

 

Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe, delivered an inspirational speech to open eHealth Week in Malta on 10–12 May 2017. This marked the first time that WHO/Europe participated in organizing the annual event. It did so alongside the Maltese Ministry for Health, the European Commission and HIMSS-CHIME International, a partnership of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society and the College of Health Information Management Executives.

Source: eHealth and public health – a beautiful marriage

World Health Day 2017! Focus on depression

7 April 2017

Depression is a major challenge to health in the WHO European Region and is the focus of World Health Day 2017. The theme “Depression: let’s talk” recognizes that depression is a treatable condition and seeks to address the fact that, despite this, about 50% of cases of major depression still go untreated. The high personal, social and economic costs and the large proportion of people who are not receiving any treatment, despite the availability of cheap and effective care, underscore the importance of overcoming this challenge.

For example, since 2008 England has significantly increased the provision of evidence-based talking therapy to people with depression and anxiety through a large-scale programme called “Improving access to psychological therapies”, available through the National Health Service. By 2012 the programme had treated more than 1 million people, of whom 680 000 completed the full course of treatment. The recovery rates of the 680 000 people were consistently above 45%, as was expected from the research evidence.

The theme of World Health Day 2017 was announced on 10 October 2016, World Mental Health Day. The campaign website contains a wide range of materials and background information.

Source: Background

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Creating age-friendly environments in Europe

Creating age-friendly environments in Europe. A tool for local policy-makers and planners (2016)

Policies to create more age-friendly environments, in which a growing number of cities and communities, local authorities and regional governments participate, have become a forceful movement in Europe and globally. These policies explore synergies between improving the physical environment of neighbourhoods, transport and housing; increasing respect, social inclusion and community participation; and investing in public services. This publication provides a toolbox to guide local policy-makers and planners in developing, implementing and evaluating age-friendly policies and interventions – policies that support people to age actively and healthily and thus both to do the things that are important to them and to contribute to their communities. Based on lessons learned from existing age-friendly initiatives in Europe, this publication summarizes key factors for establishing and sustaining successful initiatives within four phases of the policy process: engaging, planning, implementing and evaluating. A wealth of examples illustrates how local governments have put the principles of age-friendly action into practice.

Source: Creating age-friendly environments in Europe. A tool for local policy-makers and planners (2016)

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eHealth and improvement of health literacy in older adults – best practices and obstacles

eHealth and improvement of health literacy in senior citizens – best practices and obstacles

03.12.2015By: Ioannis Koutelidas

The implementation of the IROHLA pilot programmes showed positive attitudes of senior citizens towards the use of e-health applications (transfer of health resources and healthcare by electronic means) and m-health applications (delivery of healthcare services via mobile communication devices) for improving and managing their health.

Modern information and communication technology (ICT) can help senior citizens overcome difficulties related to distance from health centres and support them to understand their health issues, improve their communication with care givers and service providers, and enhance informed decision making. Additionally, ICT facilitates more targeted public health and medical interventions, as well as remote diagnosis and monitoring. In general, technology offers tools necessary for families, communities, healthcare professionals and the healthcare system to assist older people to age healthily. ICT creates innovative solutions, such as interventions through the internet, mobile phones, tablets, and video games that can improve the health of older people.

IROHLA’s work on e-health and m-health

The IROHLA project examined several promising practices among different groups of participants, including older adults with low health literacy, using different kinds of technical equipment. Some of these were applications that aimed to increase physical activity and track weight loss, while others supported behavioural change and sleep quality, or were games designed to improve cognitive skills.

One of the pilot projects designed by Prolepsis Institute aimed to improve participants’ knowledge about physical activity and healthy nutrition as well as related behaviours, while exploring attitudes towards ICT-based health applications. The content was based on the Greek National Dietary Guidelines for older people developed by the Prolepsis Institute. This tool enabled participants to set their own dietary and physical activity goals and assess them at the end of a specific period (normally one week) regardless of whether they achieved them or not. The system generated personalised messages based on the assessment of goals.

Research conducted during the implementation of the IROHLA project brought to the surface important learning points and obstacles that need to be carefully examined when developing similar interventions. One of the main conclusions was the need for active and continuous collaboration between application developers, healthcare professionals and researchers. Other matters that should be taken into consideration when designing such applications include simplification of the content and use of the application, and the ability to set short-term, personalised goals.

The importance of considering socio-economic status

In an era of technological innovations, a false perception dominates that all people are familiar with computers, smart phones and tablets. But this is not always true, especially when referring to the older generation. In addition, socio-economic status plays an important role in determining understanding of new technologies and the messages it delivers. That is why these factors should not be ignored when designing e-health and m-health applications that aim to contribute to the reduction of both inequalities between different social groups.

Source: news

Mayo Clinic researchers find mentally stimulating activities after age 70 associated with lower new cognitive-impairment risk

The study discovered that for cognitively normal people 70 or older, the risk of new-onset mild cognitive impairment decreased by 30 percent with computer use, 28 percent with craft activities, 23 percent with social activities, and 22 percent with playing games — at least one to two times per week.*

Source: Mayo Clinic researchers find mentally stimulating activities after age 70 associated with lower new cognitive-impairment risk

Harvard study of almost 800k lives shows technology reduces medication error

Researchers at Harvard Medical School have demonstrated a new technology can help reduce a widespread problem that harms some 1.5 million people every year – medication error.

Of the valid alerts, 75 percent of them were for potentially life-threatening prescription errors, giving researchers a validation of of MedAware’s probabilistic, machine-learning approach (provided it is based on high-quality, complete underlying data).

Source: Harvard study of almost 800k lives shows MedAware technology reduces medication error

Can the Arts Promote Health-Related Quality of Life in Australia?

Read about creative ageing in Australia!!

GLOBAL HEALTH AGING

As the global population ages, it is important to start designing strategies to address quality of life among older adults. As defined by the World Health Organization, health is “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” Designing programs and policies to encourage quality of life across the age spectrum should not focus solely on addressing health issues as the arise, but rather, promoting positive ways of living that can impact health in all realms – physical, mental, and social – throughout one’s life.

Strategies for healthy aging should include promoting activities that foster both individual growth and community participation. One such option is participation in the arts, which has shown to have a positive impact on both the individual and society.

Studies have shown that participating in visual arts, music, dance, drama, storytelling, etc. can improve mental and physical…

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PBS documentary Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts

Don’t miss PBS’ powerful documentary ‘Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts’ on the national threat posed by Alzheimer’s disease. The documentary illuminates the social and economic consequences for the country unless a medical breakthrough is discovered. ‘Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts’ premieres Wednesday, 1/25 at 10/9c

Watch Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts here:  http://www.pbs.org/video/2365872329/

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Thanks to AI, Computers Can Now See Your Health Problems

A similar tool could help with early detection of America’s sixth leading cause of death: Alzheimer’s disease. Often, doctors don’t recognize physical symptoms in time to try any of the disease’s few existing interventions. But machine learning hears what doctor’s can’t: Signs of cognitive impairment in speech. This is how Toronto-based Winterlight Labs is developing a tool to pick out hints of dementia in its very early stages. Co-founder Frank Rudzicz calls these clues “jitters,” and “shimmers:” high frequency wavelets only computers, not humans, can hear.

Read the full article by clicking on the title, below.

Thanks to AI, Computers Can Now See Your Health Problems

4 Reasons People with Dementia Hate to Shower & How to Fix It

Check out this fellow blogger’s post on making shower time more understandable and easier!

The Imperfect Caregiver

shower-head

1. You asked: When asked a yes or no question a person with dementia may not understand the question and automatically answer with a resounding NO to avoid agreeing to anything they may not want.

Why? Because it’s one of the first words we learn when beginning to speak. It’s short and powerful and it works if we repeat it often enough. Instead of asking, get everything ready and then gently say, “Your shower is ready,” and lead him or her into the room.

2. Room Temperature: When preparing the room make sure it is very warm. It may feel like a sauna to you but to someone who is frail it could still feel chilly. Make sure the water is warm also but make sure it isn’t hot. Test it as you would before bathing an infant. Have plenty of soft, warm towels at hand. Warming them in…

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Hour-long naps may boost mental ability for older adults

Hour-long naps may boost mental ability for older adults

Moderate nappers also had better cognitive performance than short nappers and extended nappers. On average, reductions in mental abilities of non-nappers, short nappers, and extended nappers were around four to six times greater than those of moderate nappers.

Read the full article here:  Hour-long naps may boost mental ability for older adults