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A LeadingAge member and 2 universities are developing and testing 3 high-tech ways to help older adults and their caregivers prevent, manage and learn more about dementia.
Here's a roundup of the latest developments.
CJE Senior Life, a LeadingAge member in Chicago, partnered with the Art Institute of Chicago to develop a new iPad app for people with dementia. The app uses art to enhance the quality of interactions between older adults with early to mid-stage dementia and their family and friends.
The “Art in the Moment” iPad app displays images of artwork from the museum’s collections. Family members can view the art together and then talk about the audible and visual questions provided on the screen. The questions are designed to stimulate the older person's mind and prompt discussion. The app also encourages users to engage in art-making activities on their own.
The app’s artwork is arranged by themes, including:
The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America funded the app’s development.
Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco are testing a video game that could make it possible for older people who aren't functioning well to become cognitively younger.
The ability to multitask declines with every decade of life between the ages of 20 and 80 years old, according to an article about the study in Nature. Initially, study participants in their 20s experienced a 26% drop in performance when the game asked them to drive and identify signs at the same time, rather than just identify signs without driving.
Multitasking ability improved after participants trained on the NeuroRacer game 3 times a week for a month. These improvements were particularly dramatic for older adults, who:
About 20,000 people worldwide are expected to participate in a new massive open online course (MOOC) from the Center for Innovative Care in Aging at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.
The free, online course begins Oct. 14. It is designed for health professionals, students and family members.
The 5-week course will:
Each class will be broken into 15- and 20-minute segments, according to The New York Times. Some segments will feature interviews with special guests.