March 31, 2016

We now have multiple copies of these popular books and DVDs

The brain that changes itself
A new science called neuroplasticity is overthrowing the old notion that the human brain is immutable. Psychoanalyst Doidge traveled the country to meet both the brilliant scientists championing neuroplasticity and the people whose lives they've transformed--people whose mental limitations or brain damage were seen as unalterable. We see a woman born with half a brain that rewired itself to work as a whole, blind people who learn to see, learning disorders cured, IQs raised, aging brains rejuvenated, stroke patients learning to speak, children with cerebral palsy learning to move with more grace, depression and anxiety disorders successfully treated, and lifelong character traits changed. Using these stories to probe mysteries of the body, emotion, love, sex, culture, and education, Dr. Doidge has written an inspiring book that will permanently alter the way we look at our brains, human nature, and human potential.

Haven't got time to read the book "The brain that changes itself" watch the DVD, and catch the sequel "Changing your mind"

Brain that Changes Itself The, & Changing Your Mind

Dr Norman Doidge examines the vast expanse of our brain’s potential in these two fascinating documentaries.

The Brain that Changes Itself
The brain can change its own structure and function through thought and activity. This sentence is the most important shift in our view of the brain since we first sketched out its basic anatomy.
In The Brain That Changes Itself, bestselling author, psychiatrist and researcher Dr Norman Doidge explores the profound implications of the changing brain in a way that will permanently alter the way we look at human possibility and human nature.
Showing the brain as fluid rather than hardwired, Dr Doidge introduces us to both the brilliant scientists championing this frontier science and the astonishing progress of people whose lives have been saved and transformed because of it.
The documentary examines a blind man who sinks a basketball; a woman with half a brain who leads a normal life; learning disorders, strokes and brain traumas that are improved and cured; and chronic pain that is alleviated. The vast expanse of the brain’s possibility is still unrealised.

I wish I were a leper : the diary one couple's struggle with fear, faith and Alzheimer's

 ...based on diary and journal entries which accurately record the journey he and his wife Margaret O’Rourke took with Alzheimer’s disease. Because of its early onset, the disease rapidly adversely affected Margaret’s quality of life. When asked why she would ever wish to be a leper, Margaret's faith filled response was, "If I were a leper He could heal me". This is a story that grabs the reader's attention from the outset. It is a record of unconditional love, pain and suffering, hope and despair, anger and elation, as well as of a personal conflict of faith, and belief in a God of love and compassion. It speaks clearly to all who care for those suffering long term terminal diseases, especially those allied to dementia.

Green vanilla tea
Marie Williams
When Marie Williams' husband Dominic started buying banana Paddle Pops by the boxful it was out of character for a man who was fit and health conscious. Dominic, Marie and their two sons had migrated to Australia to have a life where they shared more family time -- when gradually Dominic's behaviour became more and more unpredictable. It took nearly four years before there was a diagnosis of early onset dementia coupled with motor neurone disease. Marie began to write, as she says, as a refuge from the chaos and as a way to make sense of her changing world. Her book, Green Vanilla Tea, has just been named winner of the 2013 Finch Memoir Prize.

To love what is : a marriage transformed
by Alix Kates Shulman
Review by our helpline staff member:
This memoir is a love story. It is inspirational, engaging and intimate. The writer shares the tumultuous events in her marriage which result when her husband, who has early signs of dementia, suffers severe brain damage after a fall.
The author openly shares her innermost feelings and struggles. Within the diabolically changed circumstances of their lives there is much sadness and despair at times but this is countered by a sense of striving to truly live fully as a couple and as individuals. They are forced by the unfolding new reality of “what is” to redefine their relationship.
The title conveys the strength of her determination – at first with her husband’s needs being paramount and then, finding a precarious balance, as she rediscovers her own life.

Jack : quality of life in dementia care [DVD] Jack cares for the dolls which are real to him. He is now able to give care as well as receive it. It makes him feel worthwhile. Jack's story is about quality of life in dementia care. It's about making a difference and finding the key to lighting a soul.
In the film "Jack" health care specialists and family members talk about sensory stimulation through the use of multisensory and doll therapy to improve the quality of life of a person with dementia. Initially Jack was obviously unhappy, however after the introduction sessions and the use of dolls, Jack changed to be a happy and engaged resident.

Slow dancing with a stranger : lost and found in the age of Alzheimer's

A New York Times Bestseller
Emmy-award winning broadcast journalist and leading Alzheimer’s advocate Meryl Comer’s Slow Dancing With a Stranger is a profoundly personal, unflinching account of her husband’s battle with Alzheimer’s disease that serves as a much-needed wake-up call to better understand and address a progressive affliction.
When Meryl Comer’s husband Harvey Gralnick was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s disease in 1996, she watched as the man who headed hematology and oncology research at the National Institutes of Health started to misplace important documents and forget clinical details that had once been catalogued encyclopaedically in his mind. With harrowing honesty, she brings readers face to face with this devastating condition and its effects on its victims and those who care for them. Detailing the daily realities and overwhelming responsibilities of caregiving, Comer sheds intensive light on this national health crisis, using her personal experiences—the mistakes and the breakthroughs—to put a face to a misunderstood disease, while revealing the facts everyone needs to know.
Pragmatic and relentless, Meryl has dedicated herself to fighting Alzheimer’s and raising public awareness. “Nothing I do is really about me; it’s all about making sure no one ends up like me,” she writes. Deeply personal and illuminating, Slow Dancing With a Stranger offers insight and guidance for navigating Alzheimer’s challenges. It is also an urgent call to action for intensive research and a warning that we must prepare for the future, instead of being controlled by a disease and a healthcare system unable to fight it.

Be with me today : a challenge to the Alzheimer's outsider [DVD] - Join Richard as he adresses an audience of aging service professionals at the Person-Centered Dementia Care Conference in Atlanta, Georgia. Richard urges them to embrace the culture change philosophy of person-centered care for people with dementia, and to recognize "that there is a person in there."

 available for loan to members of AANSW - if you would like to reserve them please email the Library on

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