Social dancing as a caregiver intervention in the care of persons with dementia
Sammanfattning: The overall aim was to study social dancing in the care of persons with dementia. One specific aim was to find out how persons with dementia functioned in social dance sessions in the light of the different aspects of the GBS rating scale (I). Another was to describe the phenomenon of social dance sessions as a caregiver intervention from the viewpoint of persons with dementia (II) and the caregivers (III). The fourth specific aim was to describe the phenomenon of emotional reaction to social dancing and walks from the perspective of persons with dementia (IV). The last specific aim was to highlight, by a way of metaanalysis of the literature, why and how dance and rhythm was used in the care of persons with dementia, this in order to achieve an aggregate and collaborative understanding from the viewpoint of the care of persons with dementia (V). Data was collected by video recording social dance sessions in one nursing home (I, II, IV), by interviews (III) and by using computerised and manual searching strategies (V). The subjects were residents in advanced stages of dementia and their caregivers. Six persons with dementia who participated in social dancing were videotaped during five dance sessions (I), and those persons and their caregivers were analysed in paper II. Seven caregivers participated in study III and were interviewed. Six other persons with dementia in study IV were videotaped during dance café and walks. A deductive content analysis (I), a phenomenological description (II, III, IV) and a qualitative meta-analysis (V) were carried out. The results show (I) that, for persons with dementia, retained abilities were prominent in dancing. Both physical and spontaneous activity was noted as good. All persons with dementia were conscious of timing and rhythm in dancing. They showed a capacity to remember old social patterns as well as old melodies. The phenomenon social dancing (II) is described in terms of the following constituents: communication, social patterns, attachment and communion, responsiveness to rhythm and attention to dance music, joy and amusement, dancing and the caregiver role, and supporting activities and creativity. The phenomenon dance sessions as a caregiver intervention (III) is described in the terms of the following constituents: prerequisites for dance sessions, creating and preparing different kinds of activities related to the dance sessions, emotional arousal, caregivers' situational understanding, and dance sessions and contextual consequences. The phenomenon emotional response to social dancing and walks (IV) was described in the terms of following constituents: engaged body, caregivers' situational understanding, constant engagement as well as reactions to persons with dementia, mutual tenderness and communion, and environmental conditions. A total of 18 articles were identified as a selected set of the 111 publications reviewed (V). The results showed that very little research has been carried out despite a large number of anecdotal articles produced by different professionals. There were differences in views, beliefs, methods, intervention techniques and values. Video recording as a data-collection method was useful but ethical issues were seldom discussed. Social dancing can be beneficial for persons with dementia but requires the caregivers' situational understanding and awareness of what conditions are required for the successful dance event in the nursing home.
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