Gerontologist talks treating memory impairment

UMSL gerontologist Thomas Meuser talks about his Life Review Project.

Thomas Meuser, director of the Gerontology Graduate Program at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, knows the benefit of using video to capture the memories of older individuals and is now finding it helpful in treating those with memory impairments.

Meuser said it’s about asking the right questions. He appeared Nov. 3 on KTVI (Channel 2) to discuss the UMSL Life Review Project and the Alzheimer’s Association Care & Conquer Conference.

“You can engage someone in some wonderful stories … even with the dementia the person can often remember and engage with you in a way that’s really meaningful for their mental health,” he told KTVI.

Meuser created the UMSL Life Review Project, which allows senior citizen volunteers to sit down with UMSL students in the Gerontology Graduate Program and record stories of their lives. Participants are asked about their lives and to recall memories and events. The interviews are videotaped and edited, and the participants receive free copies to share with family and friends. He will discuss the project Nov. 14 at Alzheimer’s Association Care & Conquer Conference in Chesterfield, Mo.


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