Hundars inverkan på hälsa hos vårdtagare på vård- och omsorgsboende - en litteraturstudie
Background: Aging and losing cognitive and physical functions is difficult. To also be affected by dementia means that you lose some part of your identity and the ability to take care of yourself. It is important to find alternative, non-pharmacological ways to increase health for the elderly and those who are affected by dementia. When dogs are used for therapeutic purposes in health care it is roughly divided into two different forms; AAA (Animal Assisted Activity) and AAT (Animal Assisted Therapy). AAI (Animal Assisted Intervention) is also used as a term, in which AAT is included. These three forms of animal contact do not require verbal communication, which is advantageous to use for people with dementia.
Purpose: Through a literature review examine whether dogs affect the health of elderly residents, living in nursing homes suffering from somatic diseases and/or dementia.
Method: Literature study with a total of nine included articles, of which one is qualitative and eight are quantitative. The databases used are PubMed, CINAHL and SCOPUS.
Results: One can derive some improved health in people living in nursing homes through the presence of dogs. However, one can not see any connection in the articles on how much time is required with the dogs or if any form of therapy (AAI, AAT or AAA) is more beneficial and effective.
Conclusion: The result demonstrates that there are positive effects on mental and physical health of those exposed to dogs in nursing homes. However, more research on larger groups is needed to determine whether there is evidence of how these therapies should be used and on what patients.
Keywords: dogs, health, dementia, nursing home
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