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Brain Training:
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Mental exercise improves the performance of the mind , just like physical exercise improves the performance of the body. Brain research has shown that when you train your attention, memory and problem- solving abilities, you will then enhance those brain functions.

Dementia Treatment | Alzheimer's Treatment | London | Brina

How is this achieved?

The amazing thing is that your brain has plasticity and continues to grow new cells and form new connections across your lifespan. This continuous brain remodeling is stimulated by your interaction with the environment across your lifespan. The more challenging and complex activities you do, the more you stimulate brain growth. We can control the quantity as well as the level of complexity of the workout our brain receives, which is great news!

How can I prevent the early signs of dementia?
Staying mentally fit and keeping your brain active is definitely a good way to start preventing early symptoms of dementia. Elderly people who are receiving intense brain workouts build up their mental reserves that act as a buffer against cognitive decline. The following studies give an overview of what has so far been investigated in regards to the relationship between brain training and the prevention of early signs of dementia.

Are there scientifically proven programs of brain training that can reduce the risk of dementia?
Brain training is a hotly debated topic. Academics and psychologists are torn when it comes to brain training: does it really work, and can it improve everyday life? Would you like to know more about the benefits of brain training? You can read the following topics to find out more.

Do brain reserves and an increased mental activity lead to a lower risk of developing symptoms of dementia?

Result:
The University of New South Wales in Sydney found that people who had a high mental activity throughout their life had a 45% lower risk of developing dementia.
Source: Valenzuela MJ., 2008

Does brain training have any effects on cognitive abilities of older people and are there any beneficial transfer effects on everyday activities?


Result: Alzheimer Hellas and Aristotle University in Thessaloniki, Greece showed that early Alzheimer patients participating in BRINA’s programs for 12 weekly sessions of 1 hour enhanced their cognitive abilities, their self-effectiveness and their performance in daily life activities.
Source: Kounti, Tsolaki, Efklides, et al., 1998

Result: Alzheimer Hellas and Aristotle University in Thessaloniki, Greece showed that elderly with MCI participating in BRINA’s programs for 12 weekly sessions of 1 hour enhanced their cognitive abilities. The diagnosis at the end of intervention was healthy aging. The improvement was noticeable still 6 months after the end of intervention and it was transferred in other cognitive areas after consolidation of new learning
Source: Kounti, Tsolaki, Efklides, et al., 2006

Result: The University of Alabama showed that brain training had indeed positive effects on cognitive abilities of older people and these benefits were still noticeable two years after their brain training.
Source: Ball et al, 2002

Can brain training facilitate everyday activities for older people in the long run?

Result: Alzheimer Hellas and Aristotle University in Thessaloniki, Greece showed that early Alzheimer patients participating in BRINA’s programs for 12 weekly individual sessions of 1 hour enhanced their cognitive abilities and their performance in daily life activities. The diagnosis at the end of intervention was Mild Cognitive Impairment. The cognitive and functional improvement was noticeable still 6 months after the end of intervention.
Source: Kounti, Tsolaki, Efklides, et al., 2006

Result: The Pennsylvania State University conducted a follow-up study 5 years after participants had tried brain training and found that the trained areas still showed visible improvements. The group that had been training their logical thinking still had less difficulties performing daily tasks and the group training their mental speed; had a higher than average information processing speed.
Source: Willis et al, 2006

Result:
After 10 years, the Pennsylvania State University conducted another follow-up study and found that participants abilities for deductive thinking still showed lasting improvements. Their information processing speed was still higher than average and the trained group stated they were experiencing less difficulties in their daily life than their counterparts that had not trained their mental abilities.
Source: Rebok, et al, 2014

What do you know about the holistic therapy in old age?

Non Pharmacological Therapies of holistic approach combining cognitive training, cognitive stimulation and psychotherapeutic techniques is most likely the best way to cover the needs and deficiencies of patients with MCI or mild dementia. In 2008 Alzheimer Hellas and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece conducted an intervention of holistic BRINA’s approach for MCI elderly, including cognitive training, stimulation, and psychoeducation. They noticed improved cognitive performance and in daily life activities, whereas the control group with no therapy demonstrated deterioration in their daily life activities.
(Tsolaki et al., 2010)

In another study of Alzheimer Hellas and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece with BRINA’s holistic intervention with mild Alzheimer patients, the results demonstrated an improvement of the general cognitive performance and daily life activities. (Kounti et al. 2008)

Furthermore, improvement has been reported in episodic memory (verbal and non- verbal), daily life activities and mood after practical problem-solving, self-assertiveness training, relaxation techniques, stress management, cognitive training, motor exercises, and a caregiver information group.
(Kurz et al., 2009)

In 2006, The ACTIVE Study, funded by the National Institute of Health, demonstrated that older adults could improve their brain abilities with the correct training. Certain mental exercises can partially offset the expected decline in older adults thinking skills and looks promising for maintaining cognitive abilities needed to do everyday tasks. Some of the gains from training were seen to be beneficial 5 years later.

The Bronx Aging Study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, followed almost 500 people for more than 20 years. The research found that people who participated in mentally stimulating activities, such as interactive games and other leisure activities ,multiple times a week, had a 65-75% better probability of retaining their cognitive abilities than those who did not participate in these activities.

Another well-known study is the Nun Study. Scientists followed 700 nuns for more than 20 years. An interesting finding was that certain types of intellectual activity and stimulation could protect against many types of cognitive decline. A study from Columbia University supports the concept of brain reserve and that education, occupation and stimulating leisure activities all reduce the potential risk of developing brain disease.
Brina : Neuropsychology Programs : Alzheimer's & Dementia Help

About Us

BRINA’s programs are very popular in Europe. The relatives of people with dementia are extremely interested in effective non pharmacological interventions to help their loved ones, to maintain their independence for the longest time possible and delay the course of the disease.

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