Anne Osmer Reporting
Evangelical Homes of Michigan announced that it is the first senior living provider in the state of Michigan to adopt the Dakim BrainFitness System as part of its wellness programming for residents.
The fully automated system supplies a constantly changing menu of challenging activities that are scientifically designed to maintain brain health as well as combat the onset and effects of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
“Senior living facilities have an obligation to do everything they can to maximize their residents’ quality of life, and a big part of that involves providing mental stimulation to help keep brains agile,” said Joanne Stutesman, administrator of data and information systems for EHM. “Dakim has taken an innovative ‘let’s have fun’ approach that encourages consistent use, and we believe it will make a big difference in keeping our residents happy, productive, and mentally fit.”
Evangelical Homes of Michigan (EHM) selected the Dakim system over competing products because of its senior-friendly design, enjoyable multimedia activities, ability to be used by most seniors without caregiver assistance, and its status as the only solution built for long-term use, considered key in using mental stimulation to fight dementia. These factors have led to Dakim’s adoption by over 200 senior living communities around the country.
“Evangelical Homes of Michigan is among the new wave of senior living communities that are recognizing the importance of providing a systematic brain fitness program for their residents. The challenge is to find a program that will keep seniors engaged without placing a burden on care providers themselves,” said Dan Michel, Dakim founder and CEO. “This adoption again demonstrates that Dakim BrainFitness meets that need better than any other product on the market.”
The Dakim BrainFitness System is the result of eight years of development in consultation with senior care providers and brain health researchers, inspired by studies indicating that regular cognitive stimulation can help fight memory loss and related ailments. One 21-year study published in the New England Journal of Medicine linked a 63% decreased risk of dementia to frequent participation in stimulating mental activities.
To encourage that sustained use, the Dakim BrainFitness System transforms standardized neurological tests and exercises into proprietary multimedia brain games that are presented in a game show-like format complete with colorful screen images, stories, voiceovers, and pre-1950s film and music clips that evoke seniors’ youth. Activities are updated every few days to avoid boredom and played on a touch screen computer appliance that requires no mouse, keyboard, computer knowledge, or software loading by care providers.
The system self-adjusts the level of challenge for ability levels ranging from active seniors to early-stage Alzheimer’s patients, enabling most seniors to use it without help from caregivers. Users are given positive verbal feedback even when they give the wrong answers to prevent discouragement and build self-esteem.
Each 20-minute session exercises short- as well as long-term memory, critical thinking, visuospatial ability, calculation, and language. Activities range from anagrams and name-that-tune challenges to interactive puzzles and narrated literary passages with follow-up questions requiring use of short-term memory and deductive reasoning.
Online demos of assorted Dakim BrainFitness System exercises are available at www.dakim.com.
Evangelical Homes of Michigan (EHM) is a not for profit organization related to the United Church of Christ providing healthcare, housing, and community services to seniors and their extended families.
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