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ss triple helix - winter 2016,  Dementia: Pathways to Hope

Dementia: Pathways to Hope

Spiritual insights and practical advice
Louise Morse

Monarch, £7.99, 2015, 160pp, ISBN 9780857216557

Reviewed by William AM Cutting, an Oxford-based paediatrician, carer and writer encouraging senior citizens.

In a world where the word 'dementia' brings dread and despair, Louise Morse is a shining herald of hope in a book loaded with information and positive ideas.

She has woven together personal stories from many people, results from various scientific studies, practical ideas and common sense, along with biblical messages of hope based on God's promises.

She indicates that dementia is a very varied disease in its presentation and progress. It is as varied and personal as the individual brain, the personality background and spirit. The diagnosis does not spell the end of life, and there may still be good years of life.

There is no medicinal 'cure' but there is often some 'plasticity of the brain'. A range of interventions can improve the quality of life and slow the progression of the disease. In particular Morse describes the application of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) with spiritual strengthening to 'Boost Brain and Soul'.

Hope in modern parlance is something that you desire but may or may not happen. Hope in the biblical sense, she declares, is much more. It is confident expectation that something will happen because God is in it.

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