Using Games as an Effective Intervention for Supporting Families Living with Dementia




Experimental Games, Dementia, Mental Health, Healthcare Technology


This paper explores the role of games in supporting dementia family caregivers during the pre- and early stages of the disease. It provides a comprehensive review of existing studies that focus on support mechanisms for both dementia patients and their caregivers, with a specific emphasis on games designed for this purpose.


This paper outlines a research study conducted in two experiments. The first experiment involved conducting separate focus groups to explore how technology can assist older adults during the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath. Group A consisted of 9 participants from the UK, while Group B comprised 8 participants from Taiwan. The aim was to gather insights and perspectives from different cultural contexts. The second experiment of the study involved testing games with dementia family caregivers to assess their effectiveness and identify areas for refinement and improvement. A total of 20 participants took part in this experiment. By conducting focus groups and game testing with participants from different regions, this research aimed to gather diverse perspectives and insights, enhancing the validity and applicability of the findings.


The findings of this project extend beyond the scope of dementia care and have implications for addressing various long-term health conditions. Games platforms have the potential to serve as effective tools for supporting communities that provide care for individuals with dementia. They offer opportunities for promoting self-understanding, accessing relevant resources, and facilitating informed decision-making within the context of health journeys.


Download data is not yet available.


A. Corner, A. Randall, Selling climate change? The limitations of social marketing as a strategy for climate change public engagement. Global Environmental Change. 21, 1005–1014 (2011).

L. E. Valente, A. Truzzi, W.F. Souza, G.S Alves, C.E. Alves, F.K. Lanna, M.E.O, Moreira. E. Engelhardt, J. Laks, Health self-perception by dementia family caregivers: Sociodemographic and clinical factors. Arquivos de Neuro-Psiquiatria. 69, 739–744 (2011).

E. L. Dalgarno et al., Home care in dementia: The views of informal carers from a co-designed consultation. Dementia. 20, 2261–2277 (2021).

S. Keisari, A. Gesser-Edelsburg, D. Yaniv, Y. Palgi, Playback theatre in adult day centers: A creative group intervention for community-dwelling older adults. PLoS ONE. 15 (2020), doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0239812.

A. J. Doornebosch, H. J. A. Smaling, W. P. Achterberg, Interprofessional Collaboration in Long-Term Care and Rehabilitation: A Systematic Review. Journal of the American Medical Directors Association. 23 (2022), pp. 764-777.e2.

A. Kontrimiene et al., Partnership between Primary Health and Social Care Services in the Long-Term Care of Older People with Dementia: A Vignette Study. Inquiry (United States). 58(2021), doi:10.1177/00469580211011933.

D. McLaughlin et al., Evaluating a partnership model of hospice enabled dementia care: A three-phased monitoring, focus group and interview study. Palliative Medicine. 36, 1351–1363 (2022).

J. Crampton, J. Dean, R. Eley, AESOP Consortium. (2012). Creating a dementia-friendly York. York: Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

C .Phillipson, T. Buffel, (2020). Age-friendly cities and communities: Policy opportunities and challenges. Journal of Elder Policy, 1(1), 137-154.

P. McGarry, J. Morris, A great place to grow older: A case study of how Manchester is developing an age-friendly city. Working with Older People. 15, 38–46 (2011)..

N. Liu, G. Wills, A. Ranchhod. (2018, August). Game for supporting dementia carers. In 2018 IEEE Games, Entertainment, Media Conference (GEM) (pp. 1-8). IEEE.

R. Schulz, L. M. Martire, Family Caregiving of Persons with Dementia: Prevalence, Health Effects, and Support Strategies. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. 12 (2004), pp. 240–249.

V. Bressan, C. Visintini, A. Palese, What do family caregivers of people with dementia need? A mixed-method systematic review. Health and Social Care in the Community. 28 (2020), pp. 1942–1960.

R. Hunicke, M. Leblanc, R. Zubek, in AAAI Workshop - Technical Report (2004), vol. WS-04-04, pp. 1–5.

B. Kim, Gamification in Education and Libraries. Library Technology Reports. 51 (2015), pp. 20–28.

J. P. Gee, Good Video Games and Good Learning: Collected Essays on Video Games, Learning, and Literacy. Good Video Games + Good Learning, 167 (2013).

N. Liu, G. Wills, (2022). Designing Serious Game Metrics for Family Caregivers of People with Dementia. International Journal of Serious Games, 9(3), 81–114.

P. H. Mirvis, M. Csikszentmihalyi, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. The Academy of Management Review. 16, 636 (1991).

W. Moyle, The promise of technology in the future of dementia care. Nature Reviews Neurology. 15, 353–359 (2019).

S. J. Czaja, M. P. Rubert, Telecommunications technology as an aid to family caregivers of persons with dementia. Psychosomatic Medicine. 64, 469–476 (2002).

G. Perugia et al., Quantity of Movement as a Measure of Engagement for Dementia: The Influence of Motivational Disorders. American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease and other Dementias. 33, 112–121 (2018).

F. Greiner et al., Expression of game-related and generic knowledge by dementia patients who retain skill at playing dominoes. Neurology. 49, 518–523 (1997).

M. Smith, A. Kolanowski, L. L. Buettner, K. C. Buckwalter, Beyond bingo: Meaningful activities for persons with dementia in nursing homes. Annals of Long-Term Care. 17 (2009), pp. 22–30.

J. D. Bacsu, M. E. O’Connell,A.Cammer, M. Azizi, K. Grewal, L. poole, S. Green, S. Sivananthan, R.J. Spiteri, Using twitter to understand the COVID-19 experiences of people with dementia: Infodemiology study. Journal of Medical Internet Research. 23 (2021), doi:10.2196/26254.

R. Tuijt, R. Frost, J. Wilcock, L. Robinson, J. Manthorpe,G.Rait,K.Walterss, Life under lockdown and social restrictions - the experiences of people living with dementia and their carers during the COVID-19 pandemic in England. BMC Geriatrics. 21 (2021), doi:10.1186/s12877-021-02257-z.

S. Dubey, S. Das, R. Ghosh, M.Dubey, A.P. Charaborty, D. Roy, G. Das, A.Dutta, A.Santra, S. Sengupta, J. Benito-Leon, The Effects of SARS-CoV-2 Infection on the Cognitive Functioning of Patients with Pre-Existing Dementia. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease Reports. 7, 119–128 (2023).

L. E. Valente et al., Health self-perception by dementia family caregivers: Sociodemographic and clinical factors. Arquivos de Neuro-Psiquiatria. 69, 739–744 (2011).

M. Z. Hossain, R. Stores, Y. Hakak, J. Crossland, A. Dewey, Dementia Knowledge and Attitudes of the General Public among the Bangladeshi Community in England: A Focus Group Study. Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders. 48, 290–296 (2020).

L. Baillie, S. Beecraft, S. Woods, Dementia friends sessions for nursing students. Nursing Older People. 27, 34–38 (2015).

J. Cohen, Cohen (1992) - A power primer.pdf. Psychological Bulletin. 1 (1992), pp. 155–159.

A. Field, Discovering Statistics using SPSS Statistics Third Edition (2009).

J. Verghese, Ptsd, dementia, and sleep disorder: A possible association. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. 48 (2000), p. 1169.




How to Cite

Liu N. Using Games as an Effective Intervention for Supporting Families Living with Dementia. EAI Endorsed Trans Perv Health Tech [Internet]. 2023 Sep. 26 [cited 2023 Dec. 10];9. Available from: