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A large-scale trial led by the University of Exeter, presented at the international Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) 2017 on Tuesday July 18, has found that cognitive rehabilitation leads to people seeing satisfying progress in areas that enable them to maintain their functioning and independence.
The Goal-oriented Cognitive Rehabilitation in Early-stage Alzheimer’s and Related Dementias: Multi-centre Single-blind Randomised Controlled Trial (GREAT) trial involved 475 people across eight sites in England and Wales. Half of them received ten cognitive rehabilitation sessions over three months, and the other half did not. The group receiving the therapy then took part in four ‘top-up’ sessions...Read more
A PenCLAHRC project showing that eating a Mediterranean diet may help reduce the risk of dementia has been reported in the Western Morning News as part of Dementia Awareness Week.
The systematic review, conducted by Dr Ilianna Lourida and Professor Jo Thompson-Coon of PenCLAHRC's Evidence Synthesis Team, brought together evidence to conclude that a Mediterranean diet could help to protect the ageing brain.
A Mediterranean diet typically consists of high consumption of plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, legumes and olive oil, moderate consumption of fish and dairy products, and reduced intake of red meat and processed foods. Moderate alcohol intake, usually wine, during meals is another...Read more
Stimulating the brain by taking on leadership roles at work or staying on in education helps people stay mentally healthy in later life, according to new research.
Led by the University of Exeter and published in the journal PLOS Medicine, the large-scale study used data from more than 2,000 mentally fit people over the age of 65, and examined the theory that experiences in early or mid-life which challenge the brain make people more resilient to changes resulting from age or illness – they have higher 'cognitive reserve'.
The study found that people with higher levels of reserve are more likely to stay mentally...Read more
A team of PenCLAHRC researchers have been awarded Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funding to develop a training toolkit that helps care home staff improve residents’ access to nature.
Research has shown that older people, including those living with dementia, can derive wellbeing benefits from sensory experiences of nature. The ESRC Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) grant aims to enhance quality of life in care homes by creating ‘My Nature: a training toolkit’ for staff in the residential/nursing care sector.
At present there are a number of barriers preventing care home residents from accessing nature. As well as many residents experiencing sensory...Read more
Video-calls using new technological devices are being used with older people in care environments across Devon and Cornwall to reduce loneliness and isolation, thanks to a PenCLAHRC-funded PhD project.
Sonam Zamir, a PhD student at PenCLAHRC, and Professor Ray Jones from Plymouth University have been working with care homes and hospitals since April 2015 to help older people get set up with Skype.
The Skype on Wheels project means older people can now stay better connected with distant relatives without getting out of bed, or needing to learn a new technology.
A Skype on Wheels device, developed by Professor Ray Jones and Plymouth...Read more
The impact of vibrations from very tall buildings, wobbly bridges and floors on people’s health and wellbeing is to be researched in a new £7.2 million government-funded national research facility at the universities of Exeter and Bath.
By recreating the vibrations using virtual-reality simulators, a multi-disciplinary team of engineers, physiologists, psychologists and medics, including PenCLAHRC’s Dr Vicki Goodwin, will explore how people can experience different symptoms of motion sickness such as tiredness, low mood, difficulty concentrating and lack of motivation if they are working in a building that sways slightly in the wind.
Despite looking rigid in appearance, tall buildings flex in...Read more
Research carried out by Plymouth University into the experience of dementia in farming and farming families, and its impact on their businesses and home lives, has identified four areas of concern.
The year-long study was undertaken by Dr Claire Kelly and Dr Richard Yarwood, with support from Ian Sherriff, who is supported by PenCLAHRC and is Academic Partnership Lead for Dementia at the University and Chair of the Prime Minister’s Rural Dementia Friendly Task and Finish Group. It is the first time that research has addressed this issue in farming.
Sixteen farmers from across Devon were interviewed, along with seven professionals from...Read more
Ian Sherriff, who is supported by PenCLAHRC, has helped develop new Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) guidelines on hidden disabilities and airports.
New guidance published by the CAA will help passengers with
hidden disabilities get better support at UK airports and more
effective communication ahead of travel, to help reduce stress and
Following a wide-ranging consultation with airports and disability organisations, the CAA has set out a number of key guidelines that include providing identity badges, bracelets or lanyards and ensuring information is available in a range of formats, including clear pictograms and audio messages.
In addition, airports are...
A set of standards and criteria for dementia education, developed by a team at PenCLAHRC, are being rolled out to all educational courses for health professionals across England.
The National Dementia Strategy, ‘Living Well With Dementia', was launched by the Government in 2009 with the aim of developing better services for people with dementia and their carers, particularly across three key areas of awareness, diagnosis and intervention, and high quality care.
One strand of this strategy aims to create an informed and effective workforce for people with dementia to ensure that all health and social care staff involved in the care of...Read more
More than half a million pounds of new cutting-edge research which aims to advance us towards a dementia cure and improve dementia care has been awarded to the University of Exeter Medical School by Alzheimer’s Society.
In the UK alone, more than 850,000 people live with dementia, and the figure is expected to rise to more than 1 million by 2021 if no action is taken. Currently, dementia costs the UK economy £26.3 billion each year, on top of the emotional burden on families and carers.
Now, a series of awards from Alzheimer’s Society to health researchers will help us to better...Read more