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Dealing with memory problems in rehabilitation
Wilson, B.A.
Reviews in Clinical Gerontology, 5, 457-463.
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This paper is concerned with the management of memory problems encountered by elderly people in their daily lives. This group is particularly vulnerable because ability declines with age in some, if not all, memory tasks. For example, age related memory decline can be observed in tasks involving working memory, where information has to be organised and manipulated as well as retained; whereas in the recall of a short sequence, where no manipulation is required, no problems occur. Age related memory decline, which may make new learning much harder, can in some instances be overcome by older people using compensatory behaviour to offset their memory difficulties. A more serious cause of memory problems in old age is the onset of certain neurological conditions. The paper covers some general principals and guidelines for helping people with memory problems before going on to consider more specific memory rehabilitation strategies.