Child’s play tonic for dementia sufferers
SPENDING time with nursery age children significantly improves the mood and wellbeing of adults with dementia, say researchers.
Shared activities such as art, gardening and music sessions were shown to have benefited both age groups during the project at Stirling University.
The academics now plan a major study to see if such an approach can help tackle loneliness in adults with dementia.
During six pilot sessions the children, aged between two and five, and the adults carried out a range of shared activities. The research team watched how the different age groups interacted during activities which included singing songs together and carrying out tasks such as potting a plant.
Early results suggested that the mood and wellbeing of the adults and the children improved after the sessions.
The study leader, Stirling University psychology lecturer Dr Line Caes, said: ‘We found the sessions were enjoyable to both the adults living with dementia and the young children, with the gardening session proving the most popular.’