MCI and Dementia Prevention Laboratory

We investigate:

  • Lifestyle modifications to reduce the risk for mild cognitive impairment and dementia.
  • Cognitive functions on which behavioral interventions can build, such as procedural memory, in healthy elderly as well as in patients with mild cognitive impairment and dementia.
  • Patient preferences in treatment outcomes for patients with mild cognitive impairment and dementia.

What is Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)?

Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) affects a person’s cognition, i.e. impacts thinking and memory abilities. The changes with MCI are significant enough to be noticed by the individual experiencing them or by those around them, but are not significant enough to interfere with the person’s daily life or independence.

People with MCI have a greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease or another type of dementia.


HABIT is a 10-day (50-hour) multi-component program offered to individuals living with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Participants are required to have a support partner, who will be included in the program. The program builds on existing strengths and recognizes that procedural memory, otherwise known as “habit memory” can be utilized to promote the highest level of function and independence.

HABIT was designed to benefit those living with MCI and their partners. The HABIT team will offer a supportive, compassionate environment and a unique blend of mind/body “training” to help maximize cognitive and physical functioning.

Participants engage daily in five essential components:

  • Individual memory compensation training
  • Group supportive therapy
  • Yoga
  • Brain fitness
  • Wellness education

HABIT program goals and benefits

  • Improved Independence, self-efficacy, functional status, and quality of life by employing a daily memory compensation tool.
  • Supportive strategies for increasing coping, self-care, and resilience.
  • Increased psychological well-being for MCI patients and their partners.
  • Establishing supportive relationships, and future supportive networks.
  • Understanding of technologies available to support current and future independence.
  • Developing techniques for effectively managing relationship changes and communication.

The program is delivered by a dedicated, multidisciplinary team, including psychologists, exercise specialists, and cognitive interventionists.

Does insurance cover this program?

Insurance is billed for the Individual Memory Compensation Training and Group Supportive Therapy (two program components). Medicare and many private insurances cover most or all of the cost for these two components. There is a program fee assessed for the cost of any remaining components not covered by insurance, including materials, site fees, and meals. We would be happy to help you answer any insurance-related questions. Please contact Doug Martin at 352-265-0294.

HABIT® Healthy Action to Benefit Independence & Thinking is a registered trademark of the Mayo Clinic Foundation, Rochester, MN, USA.

Lab director

Glenn E Smith
Department: Department of Clinical and Health Psychology

Glenn E Smith Ph.D., ABPP-cn

Phone: (352) 273-6556