Experiencing Dementia from Inside: The Expediency of Immersive Presence
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The lengthening of life expectancy has shown a positive trend of neurodegenerative diseases and, among these, dementia seems to have a large incidence in the world population. Unfortunately, in their individual, social and institutional contexts people with dementia are very often stripped of their “being a person” and, finding themselves in a condition of particular frailty, they become the object of exclusion. More recently the idea of being aware about pathological cognitive decline linked to neurodegenerative diseases is growing worldwide through the Dementia Friendly Community movement. It is asking to general population to perform inclusive behaviors towards people living with different forms of dementia (including Alzheimer’s disease) by maintaining their personal and professional role within the urban community. Despite the large amount of Dementia Friendly initiatives, if a member of the community doesn’t have the opportunity to personally observe this living condition among her/his close relationships she/he probably tend to consider the dementia population as largely needful and highly usefulness, without exactly understand how they can contribute in this inclusive process. In order to support the urban community members in their broadly availability to adequately play their social role towards people living with dementia, the present research introduces ViveDe: examples of immersive experiences possible trough virtual reality. With the aim of pushing the general population in understanding how living with dementia could be like, different daily situation where proposed and social perspective change was analyzed.
ViveDe experience revealed how “being present” in the daily challenges an urban space proposes (e.g. exploiting her/his duty at home, going around in a unknown city, having some leisure time with friends) sheds new light on the role each community’s member can play towards people with dementia.
KeywordsCognitive frailty Alzheimer Dementia Friendly ViveDe 360° video Virtual reality
I would fully thank, once again, Giuseppe Riva who, without imposing me a rework, always stimulates new challenges in my research pathways.
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