What is Cognitive Stimulation Therapy?

Cognitive Stimulation Therapy (CST) is an evidence based therapy designed to improve well-being and confidence for people with mild to moderate dementia.


What does it involve?

CST involves 14 group sessions. These sessions last approximately 1 hour and usually run over a 7 week period. (2 sessions per week)

  • each session follows a general theme, with choices of activities in order to cater to the interests of the group
  • a maximum of 10 people, including the group leaders, will attend each session
  • the group is a ‘closed’ group, which means that the same people will attend every session 
  • light refreshments will be available during the sessions.


Who runs the group?

The group will usually be led by two members of health or social care staff.  The group should be run by the same group leader but if this is not possible then another member of staff will take over.


What happens after the 14 sessions end?

It is important that you continue with the activities that you have enjoyed and the ones that you have found helpful. You may also want to consider joining a community activity group.


Where can I find more information?

  • National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (2006). Dementia: supporting people with dementia and their carers in health and social care. NICE clinical guideline 42, November 2006.www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg42
  • An Introduction to Cognitive Stimulation Therapy website   http://www.cstdementia.com/









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