chapter  21
Role of the physiotherapist in the management of dementia
BySue Lord, Lynn Rochester
Pages 9

Physiotherapy (and exercise) plays a key role in preservation of movement in people with cognitive impairment and dementia, with evidence to suggest that exercise may also be protective of future decline in memory. Over the past decade, understanding of the role of cognition in motor control has increased with consequences for independent and safe mobility and this knowledge provides a strong rationale for physiotherapy intervention. Recognition of the trajectory of cognitive impairment assists in understanding the role of physiotherapy across the continuum, which is adapted to suit personal factors such as age, ethnicity, preexisting comorbidities and environment – all of which may act as barriers or facilitators for the patient.