This Third Edition of the bestselling Psychotherapy with Older Adults continues to offer students and professionals a thorough overview of psychotherapy with older adults. Using the contextual, cohort-based, maturity, specific challenge (CCMSC) model, it draws upon findings from scientific gerontology and life-span developmental psychology to describe how psychotherapy needs to be adapted for work with older adults, as well as when it is similar to therapeutic work with younger adults. Sensitively linking both research and experience, author Bob G. Knight provides a practical account of the knowledge, technique, and skills necessary to work with older adults in a therapeutic relationship. This volume considers the essentials of gerontology as well as the nature of therapy in depth, focusing on special content areas and common themes.
Chapter 8: Psychotherapy and the Person with Dementia
Psychotherapy and the Person with Dementia
Acommon response to the thought of doing psychotherapy with persons with dementia includes the unexamined assumption that it would not be possible because dementia involves physical loss of brain cells and neurotransmitters and because the person's memory is gone. This thinking reflects a kind of neurological determinism that, as Tom Kitwood's (e.g., 1997) work points out, oversimplifies and distorts what occurs in the person with dementia. It is undeniable that changes occur in the brains of persons with dementia. The changes are gradual over a period of several years, however, and although important functions and aspects of the person are lost during that time, they are not lost all at once. The assumption that ...