Between 25 to 50 per cent of older adults living independently at home experience minor cognitive issues. Research has shown that self-identified memory and thinking problems may be a predictor of dementia. Dr. Deirdre Dawson has adapted an educational intervention known as Real World Strategy Training (RWST) for use by adults aged 60+ with self-identified cognitive decline that could eventually impact their functioning and independence.
This research could provide seniors’ centres with a scalable and cost-effective care program for older adults facing difficulties in completing everyday tasks and experiencing changes to their memory and thinking abilities.
“With my research, I hope to empower people to do what they want to do in life and we’ll give them strategies that will promote their brain health,” Dr. Dawson said.
‘I hope to empower people to do what they want to do in life’
In a pilot study, participants saw significant improvements in their ability to complete identified everyday tasks and 61.5 per cent of participants’ goals were achieved through use of the intervention.