Dementia Rehabilitation - Chapter 4: Maintaining and improving physical function in dementia

Elsevier, Dementia Rehabilitation, October 2021, Pages 57-79
Michele L. Callisaya, Susan W. Hunter, Manuel Montero-Odasso

It is now recognized that physical functioning is affected in people living with dementia. Impairments include poorer reaction time, weaker muscle strength, reduced coordination, and impaired balance. Along with cognitive impairment, physical impairments contribute to increased risk of adverse events such as falls and fractures. This chapter outlines the common physical impairments found in people living with dementia, as well as evidence for treatments to maintain or improve physical function and prevent falls, in both community and residential settings. This includes both nonpharmacological interventions and pharmacological interventions. Considerations for adapting programs for people with dementia are described and include modification of instructions, the environment, and the form of exercise.