Persons with dementia are likely to experience a decline in self-esteem because of the awareness of the gradual loss of cognitive functions. We have developed a device for enhancing highly positive self-perceptions (self-enhancement) of people with dementia, by assisting them to remember successful experiences. Seventy-eight Japanese adult participants recalled the experience that provides their strongest feelings of self-worth, and rated the characteristics of the experience to specify experiences that should be recorded and reviewed by the devise for promoting self-enhancement. The proportion of self-esteem memories focused on interpersonal themes was equal to the proportion of memories focused on achievement themes. Memories with direct reciprocity themes provided a stronger the sense of self than memories that involved both achievement and interpersonal themes together. This result indicated that recalling memories of direct reciprocity could enhance not only self-esteem, but also the sense of self-identity, which is weak in people with dementia.
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