Tag Archives: dementia

NLP for Dementia


She knocks me on the shoulder ” It worked, what you told me!” My mother did not recognize me at all, when I entered her room. She asked: who are you? I said: “It’s me, your daughter Nelly” No, you are not, she replied. I showed her my face on her left side – the spot of her visual memory – and she said: ” Oh Nelly, I am so glad you are here”.

Eyepatterns are an important tool within NLP. When people are looking up while talking, they usually ‘see’ things; on the right side constructed images and on the left recalled images. This is reversed in some people though. Probably the cause why the woman in this movie recognizes her daughter. The recalled sounds of her voice will have helped as well.. the human voice is changing less during life than the face. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxDo0j6l2s8

eyeaccessing cues1

When people are sitting eyes down they are most probably thinking or feeling. If your parent with dementia seems stuck into a depressed state, try to help the person by letting the eyes look up by placing yourself in a higher position. Looking up makes it difficult to feel dreary. The drawing of this depressed looking man is a self portrait of a painter with Alzheimer’s disease. Read the interesting story of William Utermohlen: http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/24/health/24alzh.html



Are you taking care of a person with dementia? It will be helpful to know what hers or his favorite sensory system used to be. The eyes, the hearing or the kynestetic system? It can help you to find good anchors to bring along a better mood of nice memories. Make also use of fragrances of the past like kitchen herbs, brass polish and that special perfume or after shave. My father with Alzheimer’s cheered up when I introduced three young women, he started charming and joking. The students worked for their college on a study how spiritual values are transfered through next generations. Many old stories could be elicited by the photo album I brought.


Establishing rapport is indispensable. Tune yourself with posture, tonality and choice of words. And laugh about the things you would be afraid to do yourself!

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