Iwao Kuboki


72 years old (As of August 2019 interview)

Year of birth:


Place of residence:

Hachioji City, Tokyo

Relatives living together:

Lives with son


Formerly in the restaurant industry

Age of onset:

About 66 years old

Age of diagnosis:

66 years old


Alzheimer type

Dementia rating scale?Mini-Mental State Examination(MMSE)
The most widely used screening test internationally for identifying dementia, in which questions are asked directly to subjects. The MMSE assesses cognitive functions with a series of questions/tasks related to orientation, memory, attention and calculation, language, giving commands and copying a picture. The test yields the highest score of 30 points, and, in general, those who score 23 points or lower are identified as suspected patients with dementia.Revised Hasegawa's Dementia Scale (HDS-R)
A screening test widely used in Japan for identifying dementia, in which questions are asked directly to subjects. It has 9 questions/tasks related to age, orientation, immediate memory and delayed recall of 3 words, calculation, backward digit span, memory of 5 objects and language fluency. The test yields the highest score of 30 points, and, in general, those who score 20 points or lower are identified as suspected patients with dementia.

HDS-R 17About (As of September 2019)

Using long-term care insurance:

Using day service (five times per week)

Past experiences


My wife passed away. Under great hardship, I ran my own Japanese restaurant alone.


I began to notice myself that I was forgetting things, such as forgetting to go to my dentist appointment.



As I was aware that I was forgetting things, I visited the hospital with my son's wife.
I closed my Japanese restaurant because my symptoms of forgetfulness began to worsen, but I still wanted to continue cooking because my body was in good health.
My daughter-in-law coordinated various things for me, such as applying for nursing care.


Although I did not have any driving problems, I stopped driving after being diagnosed with dementia.


I was attending a rehabilitation day care where I could do exercises, but the care manager told me that, because I was good with my hands, I might like to try another place where I could engage in activities and work.
There were no vacancies, and I waited for an opening to come up while I continued to go to the rehabilitation day care almost every day.


I started going to the day that became available and liked that there were jobs to do.


I feel that I am doing what I want to do with my day care friends, such as working hard to make shoehorns and posting local newspapers.

Joy in life and living


Joy that you have given up

Cooking (I worked in the restaurant business all my life and had my own restaurant)


Joy that you have given up

Playing golf


Joy that has come to you after onset

Making shoehorns at the day service and getting people to buy them

Something you would like to do in the future

I am satisfied with my current life. I cannot think much about the future any more. If I can move my body, I think I can continue making shoehorns. I want to keep coming until I am told that I do not have to come.

Challenges in daily living

Physical and mental dysfunctions

Message to the society

I did everything at my own restaurant. Even now, I would like to clean my own house and manage my own bank and pension accounts, the money that I have saved up through long and hard work. People would not let me take care of what I think I can manage. At first, I thought, "Screw you. Do not underestimate me." It is my policy to do what I have to do. I am able to do things one way or another like this, and I am not a guinea pig. People have taken away my pension and everything else and control them.
But my family members have their way of thinking, and they think they are doing everything for my good. So I do not think they even dream that I am annoyed with them. I think they are just trying to make me feel a little more positive about having dementia. On occasions, I just wonder why they go this far every single time. They will not even give me my own pension unless I say, "Please." They think I will never need money, but it is not that I want to buy something. It is about my mentality.
When I become weaker and unable to stand on my feet, it would probably be helpful if I could get a lot of help, I guess.
Well, now that I think about it, I am feeling that it might be fine this way. I have gradually become more and more used to their way of doing things.

I find it interesting to be able to create something in my own way. The fact that I am working together with people of similar ages is..., how should I put it? Somehow, it feels different from what I have done before. There is something different to it. Every day I come here. It is not something I hate. I feel I am doing things and work that I like.

It may sound funny if I say that making things is better suited for me. However, I can never sharpen bamboo and make exactly the same shoehorn, either. I try hard to make the same thing, but it is hard, isn't it? The joints of the bamboo are different, and the cuts are different. I do not think the same thing can be made twice. It is interesting that I still make efforts to create a shape that I have in mind. And then, I can think, "Well made. This will sell." That is central to me now.

The image of dementia is wandering. My father had that. I have to be strong to prevent that from happening. I strongly feel that I need to draw the line and not cause trouble to others. I also feel that I do not want to be a trouble by not attending the day care center.
To the fact that I have dementia, I think there is a part of me that is still saying, "Wait a minute." I also feel that I can do things by myself and that I am not bothering others.