Memories Supporting Myself: Autobiographical Memory Supports Self-Continuity in Alzheimer's Disease

Mohamad El Haj*, Abdelhalim Boudoukha, Pascal Antoine, Ahmed A. Moustafa, Karim Gallouj, Philippe Allain

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We investigated, for the first time, how people with mild Alzheimer's disease (AD) reflect on continuity of their self (i.e., whether they are the same person they were before). We invited people with mild AD and control participants to conduct The Thinking about Life Experiences (TALE) Scale. More specifically, we invited participants to indicate whether they think about their life story: when they want to feel that they are the same person that they were before (Item 1), when they are concerned about whether they are still the same type of person that they were earlier (Item 2), when they are concerned about whether their values have changed over time (Item 3), when they are concerned about whether their beliefs have changed over time (Item 4), and when they want to understand how they have changed from who they were before (Item 5). The scores of people with AD and control participants on the items of the TALE scale were similar, except for the first item on which people with AD provided higher scores than did control participants. As demonstrated by scores on Item 1, people with mild AD can retrieve autobiographical memories to reflect on situations in which they want to feel that they are the same person that they were before. In other words, people with mild AD can draw on their personal and meaningful events to maintain a continuous sense of self or even to reflect on situations in which they are concerned about their self-continuity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1217-1224
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Alzheimer's Disease
Volume70
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes

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