Using Mobile Technology to Provide Personalized Reminiscence for People Living With Dementia and Their Carers: Appraisal of Outcomes From a Quasi-Experimental Study

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Abstract

Background: Dementia is an international research priority. Reminiscence is an intervention that prompts memories, and has been widely used as a therapeutic approach for people living with dementia. A novel iPad app was developed to support home-based personalised reminiscence. It is crucial that technology-enabled reminiscence interventions are appraised.Objective: This study sought to measure the effect of technology-enabled reminiscence on mutuality (defined as the level of ‘closeness’ between an adult living with dementia and their carer), quality of carer and patient relationship and subjective wellbeing.  Methods: A 19-week personalised reminiscence intervention facilitated by a programme of training and a bespoke iPad app was delivered to people living with dementia and their family carers, in their own homes. Participants (n=60) were recruited in dyads from a cognitive rehabilitation team affiliated with a large UK health care organisation. Each dyad comprised a person living with early to moderate dementia and his/her family carer. Outcome measurement data were collected at baseline, midpoint and intervention close. Results: Participants living with dementia attained statistically significant increases in mutuality (p < .001), quality of carer and patient relationship (p < .001), and subjective wellbeing (p < .001) from baseline to endpoint. Carers attained non-significant increases in mutuality and quality of carer and patient relationship, and a non-significant decrease in subjective wellbeing. Conclusions: Our results indicate that individual specific reminiscence supported by an iPad app may have efficacy in the context of early to moderate dementia. A robust randomised controlled trial of technology enabled personalised reminiscence is warranted.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere57
Number of pages14
JournalJMIR Mental Health
Volume5
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Sep 2018

Keywords

  • Dementia
  • evaluation
  • mobile apps
  • reminiscence
  • research
  • technology
  • mobile phone

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