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  • Writer's pictureNicole Will

Decoding Dementia: Futureproof Your Brain

Natalie Elliott Handy confessions of a reluctant caregiver

Decoding Dementia: Futureproof Your Brain with Mitchell Clionsky, PhD Neuropsychologist & Author of “Dementia Prevention: Using Your Head to Save Your Brain”

Research suggests one in every two dementia cases can be prevented.

Today, my guest is Mitchell Clionsky PhD, a board-certified clinical neuropsychologist with 45 years of experience evaluating and treating patients with MCI, dementia, ADHD, and brain injury. In their book, “Dementia Prevention: Using Your Head to Save Your Brain”, Emily Clionsky MD and Mitchell Clionsky PhD, renowned "braindocs", guide you on a path to brain health through their unique, evidence-backed approach combining science and psychology. A publication of Johns Hopkins Press, this book dives into the pressing need to address factors like sleep apnea, social isolation, sensory deprivation, and the importance of treating conditions like depression, which can often be overlooked in the broader context of cognitive health. Together, they've curated a wealth of knowledge and strategies in their book to help you reduce your risk of “all-cause dementia”. The mission behind the book is Brain Health Awareness, intending to educate and motivate individuals to reduce the impending burden of dementia. For many families, watching a loved one struggle with dementia has led to their apprehensions about facing a similar diagnosis.

Dr. Mitchell Clionsky, both with extensive professional background and personal experiences in dealing with dementia, will enlighten us about what we've historically known about dementia prevention and where we currently stand. With his guidance, we'll explore the landscape of treatments on the horizon for dementia and Alzheimer's. He also provides practical and actionable insights to those feeling overwhelmed about where to begin in dementia prevention.

If you're curious, there's a self-assessment in their book, and even a free version on their website,, to start you on this essential journey. So, whether you're concerned for yourself, a loved one, or simply curious, join us today as we unravel the intricacies of dementia and discover ways to guard our most precious possession: our brain.

Thank you, Mitchell, for sharing this invaluable information and enriching our podcast.

Learn more at

Listen to our episode HERE.

Dr. Clionsky shares about:

  • Introduction to Mitchell Clionsky Ph.D. and their book “Dementia Prevention: Using Your Head to Save Your Brain”

  • Insights into baseline cognitive tests, especially for older adults and family caregivers

  • Exploring the various types of dementia, from Alzheimer’s to Vascular Dementia, and more

  • Prevention and treatment: Historical understanding and current advancements in dementia prevention, with glimpses into upcoming treatments for dementia and Alzheimer's

  • Knowing actionable steps and how we understand brain health awareness, practical prevention strategies, and the self-assessment tools available in their book and on

About Mitchell Clionsky, PhD & Dementia Prevention

In Dementia Prevention, the authors take you on a guided tour through dementia, what

it is all about, and why 20 different factors can affect your dementia risk. They build a

visual model of dementia risk, chapter by chapter, pulling together the results of

validated scientific research to give you a clear picture of how the pieces interact. When

you fill out your “Dementia Risk Checklist” in the book (or at you

will create your individualized picture of your strengths and areas for improvement.

But facts and theory are not enough. This is a book about change, about succeeding in

reducing your risk for dementia. They supplement the facts and statistics with

fascinating real-life examples to answer the overriding question: How can you become

“the one” in the “one of two” people who do not have to age into dementia? Drawing

on decades of experience as therapists and behavior change experts, they will give you

practical and proven cognitive behavioral methods that you can apply in order to

improve your brain now and keep your brain healthy for decades.


Emily Clionsky, MD (SPRINGFIELD, MA), is an internal medicine doctor with 25 years of

experience and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. She sees

patients and practices in forensic settings.

Mitchell Clionsky, PhD (SPRINGFIELD, MA), is a board-certified clinical neuropsychologist with 45

years of experience evaluating and treating patients with MCI, dementia, ADHD, and brain injury.

They developed the Memory Orientation Screening Test (MOST), used by hundreds of doctors.

A husband-and-wife team, they have a combined 70 years of professional and clinical experience

in medicine and neuropsychology and have treated nearly 20,000 patients. They are experienced

public speakers, podcast guests, and workshop presenters for general and professional


koelsch communities caregiver support

Dementia prevention book

*This episode is brought to you by Gigi Betty co. A boutique gift shop raising awareness and funds for caregivers and care partners. Show now at Use the special code WILLGATHER20 for 20% off your order- Just for our podcast listeners!

LISTEN NOW: Apple Podcasts, Spotify & on your favorite podcast platform.

We are not medical professionals and are not providing any medical advice. If you have any medical questions, we recommend that you talk with a medical professional of your choice. willGather has taken care in selecting its speakers but the opinions of our speakers are theirs alone. Thank you for your continued interest in our podcasts.

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Nicole Will is our host and founder of willGather.


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