This pilot program studies the feasibility of implementing individualized brain training for older adults in Ireland and Brazil. Cognition covers memory, attention, language, and other brain functions that are important for good quality of life and independence. Recent studies indicate that improving cognition by means of intensive computerized brain training can mitigate some aspects of age-related cognitive decline and may have a role in preventing or delaying dementia onset. Critically, the capacity of a given individual to improve cognitive performance is fundamentally related to engagement with the exercises. Currently, little is known about how to apply brain training effectively in the health system, ensuring engagement.
This project aims to develop, apply, and test the community readiness approach to implement brain training in the daily life of older adults. We will conduct semi-structured interviews with participants and key informants, and use this information to design individualized training programs. Thirty participants, recently evaluated at different memory clinics in Ireland and Brazil, will be recruited, interviewed, and invited to engage, over the ensuing 2 to 3 months, in computerized brain training. We will assess motivation, training adherence, and individual gains on the computerized exercises. This pilot project will inform a future larger controlled clinical trial to evaluate the efficacy of this approach in increasing the engagement to computerized brain training.