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September 24, 2008


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Carole Mulliken

Alternative treatments as described at the recent ICAD meeting may be somewhat promising. However, as a person with dementia myself, I am continually disappointed in every piece of research I read that BYPASSES the possibility that the patient himself might conduct useful activities to prolong functionality. What good does it do me, if I have to rely on the willingness, time, resources and understanding of a caregiver--professional or personal--in order to get help?

Allowing people with dementia to continue to believe that they must rely on others for help only increases the excess disability called learned helplessness.

Who will do research into how I can help myself? Nobody, it seems. Could it be because nobody stands to profit from my remaining as functional as possible?

Sorely annoyed,

Carole M.


A-men! This learned and sometimes forced dependency on others to be active is toxic to our already damaged sense of self, sense of self-worth, since of independence.

There is no mention of self-empowerment, or even the possibility of self empowerment. I know there are many folks deeply into the symptoms of dementia from whom the the concepts, the needs for independence and self-empowerment seems gone forever! But isn't it the responsibility of careers and especially professions to never give up attempting to find new was to cause the flicker of humaninty within everyone up to the moment of death to burn as brightly as possible?

individual living with the symptoms of dementia for a while and afraid this is happening to him

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