Remembering and recollecting are immensely complex processes based on the processing, segregating and coding information.
The colloquial term “memory” includes numerous complex components known as “cognitive functions or processes”. These include such notions as: attention, concentration, operating memory, short term memory, long term memory, speech functions, abstract thinking, visual-spatial processes, etc.
In order to preserve all the aforementioned processes, mental capacity needs to be trained – similar to how one would undergo physical training to keep their body in shape. Alzherimer’s disease and other dementive disorders hinder these processes and cause a general deterioration of intellectual functions. The treatment of such disorders should be two-fold. First and foremost, the patient should be treated pharmaceutically (i.e. administered the proper medication). Secondly, the patient should also undergo non-pharmaceutical therapy, including a series of specialized therapeutic techniques designed to improve cognitive processes.
According to the Interdisciplinary Expert Group for Diagnosing and Treating Dementia, non-pharmaceutical treatment should be administered to the majority of patients suffering from cognitive function disorders. It is a crucial part of therapy, yet is often easily dismissed by medical personnel.