Cognitive stimulation

Simplified definition

A program used to help people with Alzheimer’s and related diseases enhance their mental abilities and quality of life thanks to a wide range of activities engaging cognitive functions.

Source: Houria Aiouaz, for Alzheimer Foundation

Referenced definition

“Cognitive stimulation is a psychological intervention widely used in dementia care, which offers a range of activities for people with dementia and provides general stimulation of cognitive abilities.”

Source: Aguirre E, Woods RT, Spector A, Orrell M. Cognitive stimulation for dementia: A systematic review of the evidence of effectiveness from randomised controlled trials. Ageing Research Reviews. 2013;12: 253-262.


Cognitive stimulation typically involves a set of tasks designed to reflect cognitive functions such as attention, memory, language, and problem solving, combined with a reality orientation session. This training takes place in individual or group sessions with a range of difficulty levels.”

Source: Mapelli D, Di Rosa E, Nocita R, Sava D. Cognitive Stimulation in Patients with Dementia: Randomized Controlled Trial. Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders Extra. 2013;3(1): 263-271.


  • Cognitive stimulation often consists of group activities such as conversations about current events, writing, reading, art, or classifying objects.
  • New activities help creating new connections between neurons.
  • Cognitive stimulation helps maintain neuroplasticity.


Cognitive stimulation therapy


Cognitive stimulation : RELATED DEFINITIONS


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