Jade Cartwright

Evaluating the feasibility and effectiveness of a novel discourse intervention to improve everyday communication in people with dementia

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Award
Dementia Centre for Research Collaboration – Dementia Australia Research Foundation Pilot Grant & Dementia Advocates’ Award
Status
In Progress
Project Snapshot

Communicating and staying socially connected with others is important to people with dementia, yet there are very few evidence-based interventions to help people living with dementia to retain skills needed for everyday conversations and to engage socially. This study will adapt a highly novel intervention approach that has been trialled with other neurological conditions, such as after stroke, in hope of improving the everyday communication and quality of life of people with dementia. This structured, yet interactive, approach aims to improve how people organise and structure their everyday talking, for example, when giving opinions, sharing personal stories, recounting events, and explaining procedures, all of which occur in daily conversations. If found to be effective, the treatment protocol refined through this study will have significant implications and be widely disseminated to speech pathologists. This study hopes to enable better access to evidence-based communication interventions that have potential to make a meaningful difference to the social connectedness and wellbeing of people living with dementia.