Abstract

With people living longer than ever, the number of cases with dementia such as Alzheimer's disease increases steadily. It affects more than 46 million people worldwide, and it is estimated that in 2050 more than 100 million will be affected. While there are not effective treatments for these terminal diseases, therapies such as reminiscence, that stimulate memories from the past are recommended. Currently, reminiscence therapy takes place in care homes and is guided by a therapist or a carer. In this work, we present an AI-based solution to automatize the reminiscence therapy, which consists in a dialogue system that uses photos as input to generate questions. We run a usability case study with patients diagnosed of mild cognitive impairment that shows they found the system very entertaining and challenging. Overall, this paper presents how reminiscence therapy can be automatized by using machine learning, and deployed to smartphones and laptops, making the therapy more accessible to every person affected by dementia.