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Getting our terminology right: the power of language

James, Ian; Reichelt, Katharina; Duffy, Frances; Moniz-Cook, Esme


Ian James

Katharina Reichelt

Frances Duffy

Professor Esme Moniz-Cook
Professor of Clinical Psychology of Ageing and Dementia Care Research/ Dementia Research Work Group Lead


For over 25 years, the term challenging behaviour (CB) has been used to describe agitation and other “distressed” behaviours associated with dementia (Stokes 2000). But such is the power of language and the importance of getting our terminology right, there has been much debate about whether we should continue to talk of “challenging behaviour”. We will discuss the results of a survey on what should replace the term, but first we will review the background to the debate.


James, I., Reichelt, K., Duffy, F., & Moniz-Cook, E. (2021). Getting our terminology right: the power of language. Journal of Dementia Care, 29(2), 24-27

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 2, 2021
Online Publication Date Mar 9, 2021
Publication Date Mar 9, 2021
Deposit Date Mar 6, 2021
Publicly Available Date Mar 9, 2021
Journal Journal of Dementia Care
Print ISSN 1351-8372
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 29
Issue 2
Pages 24-27
Public URL


Published article (208 Kb)

Copyright Statement
© 2021 Hawker Publications Ltd. Reproduced with permission.

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