10 of the Best Books on Dementia
Written by Josh Horsman
1. The Best Friends Approach to Dementia Care - Virginia Bell and David Troxel Both the authors of this book are experts in Dementia Care and their knowledge shines through in the practical and relatable nature of their innovative approach to Dementia care. The book acts as a helpful and valuable roadmap to a more relationship-centred attitude to the care of those living with Dementia. The book advocates and inspires empathy, trust support and even humour in the caring process and does so with practical advice that will be welcomed by caregivers and family members regardless of their level of experience in dementia care.
2. A Caregiver's Guide to Lewy Body Dementia - Helen Buell Whitworth and James Whitworth As many as 30% of all cases of Dementia are LBD, so it is surprising that there is still a relative lack of awareness and understanding about the condition compared to Alzheimer’s (the most common form of Dementia). This book serves to fill that knowledge gap, providing caregivers with a detailed and practical guide to caring for loved ones living with LBD. Author James Whitworth is co-founder of the Lewy Body Dementia Association, and he writes from a position of both knowledge and personal experience, having cared for his first wife who lived with LBD. The result is that this guide is easy to understand and filled with relatable examples to which caregivers can instantly connect. A must-have for family-members of those living with LBD. 3. Contented Dementia - Oliver James This book tackles the challenge of enabling those with Dementia to maintain the highest possible quality of life whilst living with the condition. To this end, author Oliver James introduces what is termed the ‘SPECAL method’ - an innovative and practical solution for Dementia patients and carers. ‘Contented Dementia’ draws on real-life examples and provides effective, user-friendly methods which can realistically be applied to help both anyone with Dementia and their carer to live well in the face of the condition. 4. The 36-Hour Day - Nancy L Mace The 36-hour day is now in its 6th edition and has been called an essential guide for caregivers and family members of those living with Alzheimer’s Disease and other forms of Dementia. These people face numerous challenges in their daily lives and this guide provides practical tips for caregivers on helping them to overcome these. Simultaneously, the guide also provides advice for caregivers and family members in supporting their own emotional needs, recognising the daily toll Dementia takes on the caregiver as well as the patient. 5. Creating Moments of Joy for the Person With Alzheimer's or Dementia - Jolene Brackey How do you find the positives in the face of the daily challenges presented by living with, or caring for someone with, Dementia?! It certainly not an easy thing to do, but that’s exactly what this Jolene Brackey challenges us to do in this book. It focuses on creating special moments, whilst also acknowledging the realities of life with the condition, encouraging hope and positivity in spite of difficulty. The advice is practical and the pages are filled with stories, encouragements and also humour! This is a ‘must read’ for caregivers and family members! 6. A Heart Full of GEMS - Rev Linn Possell Dementia might be thought of as an ‘older people’s’ condition, but it’s something we could all benefit from learning to understand better. This book is aimed at children and uses a captivating story and beautiful illustrations to introduce the condition to young minds in a way they can understand. Most importantly, it reinforces the importance of the human connection that can be maintained even when a loved-one is living with dementia. 7. What The Hell Happened to my Brain?: Living Beyond Dementia - Kate Swaffer Enhanced by the unique personal experience of author Kate Swaffer, this book is an in-depth, insightful exploration of ‘young-onset Dementia’. Kate offers refreshing new perspectives and thought-provoking ideas about living with Dementia in daily life, including discussing the role that medical professionals and family and friends can play in supporting people post diagnosis. 8. The MIND Diet - Maggie Moon MS RD Scientific research has confirmed with increasing certainty the relationship between diet and Dementia. The idea that, by following a specific healthy diet, you can reduce your risk of developing Dementia, is now widely accepted by experts. In ‘The MIND Diet’, Maggie Moon introduces a groundbreaking new diet plan which combines two of the best scientifically-proven brain-healthy diets. MIND stands for the Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay. The MIND diet aims to reduce dementia and the decline in brain health that often occurs as people get older. It combines aspects of the Mediterranean diet and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet. This book is packed full with a rich and diverse range of dishes which are not only delicious, but will also give your brain health a boost! 9. A Funny Thing Happened on My Way to the Dementia Ward: Memoir of A Male CNA - Charles G. Schoenfeld This book takes the view from a carers perspective, being written by a certified nursing assistant and divulging stories from his years of service. While it is sure to be a hit with fellow nursing and care workers, this book serves a potentially invaluable purpose as a guide and comfort for family members who are debating, or adjusting to, moving a loved one into a nursing home. 10. Still Alice - Lisa Genova This book might be a fiction novel, but it is certainly worth a read for both people living with dementia and their carers and family alike. Not only is it a compelling and relatable tale of what happens when memory problems strike in the prime of a person’s life, but also, being written by a neuroscience expert, the book provides an accurate account of both the nature of Dementia and daily life with it. The book is an emotional journey that will leave you with plenty to think about whilst also proving extremely relatable for those with experience of Dementia.