Bangor dementia patient trial to look at games and quizzes

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Image caption Word games, quizzes and discussions with family members are suggested

People with dementia and their carers are to be recruited for a trial looking at how word games and quizzes can benefit brain stimulation in sufferers.

Bangor University research suggests cognitive stimulation from playing dominoes or even baking a cake can also help boost memory.

There are now plans to trial the technique to see how it can be used by families and carers.

The trial in north Wales will be run jointly with University College London.

According to Bangor University, there is a general belief that activities that stimulate the mind - cognitive stimulation - help to slow its decline in people with dementia.

The review, led by Bangor University professor, Bob Woods, and published in The Cochrane Library, looked at trial results from around the world involving 718 people with mild to moderate dementia.

Prof Woods, of the university's dementia services development centre, told BBC Radio Wales: "This review involves people who have already developed dementia.

"It suggests that in people with mild to moderate dementia this is very useful strategy, not only for improving memory, but for improving quality of life.

"These are very simple straightforward activities.

"It's not like brain training - repeating the same exercises over - these are meant to be enjoyable fun activities that people can do together.

"It can range from music to dominoes, word games, quizzes, baking a cake, reminiscing - a whole range of things."

The review says the benefits of cognitive stimulation were still being seen up to three months after starting.

He said such activities were carried out by staff in many care homes.

"We are also interested in whether this can be taught to family carers looking after a person with dementia and we've got a major trail starting here at Bangor to examine the effects of that approach," he added.

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