In recent years, much has been written about the dread disease called Alzheimer’s. Around the world, more and more attention is being paid to this debilitating, tragic ailment. Even more focus has been turned to Alzheimer’s since the death of former United States President Ronald Reagan.
Certainly, much of the focus over the past decade when it comes to Alzheimer’s has been on developing drugs and medications designed to stave off or prevent the tragic illness. But, in addition to pharmaceutical research efforts, a quiet group of scientists and doctors have been considering the value of the educational computer game in preventing the onset of Alzheimer’s in certain patient groups.
On March 31, 2001, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences noted that “people with Alzheimer’s disease were less active in passive, physical and intellectual activities. Since intellectual activities appear to keep the brain healthy, adults should have more opportunities to participate in learning activities.” (Proceedings before the National Academy of Sciences, used with permission.)
Indeed, a year later, the Journal of the American Medical Association echoed these sentiments when it wrote: “Participating in ordinary tasks such as reading, listening to the radio and playing (educational) games…may stave off the memory-robbing illness (known as) Alzheimer’s disease.” (JAMA, 2002:287, used with permission.)
The educational computer game provides a perfect mechanism for men and women facing an early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s to fight the serious memory loss associated with the disease.
While there are isolated examples of educational computer game products geared for older users afflicted with Alzheimer’s, many of the more basic and widely marketed educational computer game programs fit the bill. A computer game program that requires a player to engage in memorizing certain patterns as play progresses, even if the game is intended for a young audience, can vastly aid in staving off memory loss associated with Alzheimer’s
Innumerable examples of such computer game products readily can be found in abundance on the Internet.
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