The impact of environmental factors on persons with dementia attending recreational groups

Jiska Cohen-Mansfield*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives: The Comprehensive Process Model of Group Engagement posits that personal factors (eg, cognitive function), stimulus factors (eg, group activity content and group size), and environmental factors (eg, light and noise) impact the response to group activities. This paper reports the impact of environmental and group characteristics on engagement, mood, and sleepiness of persons with dementia attending group activities. Methods/design: The sample included 69 nursing home residents. Environmental contexts of activities included time of day, location, noise, light, and temperature. Outcome variables captured engagement, mood, and sleepiness, observed during 20 group activity sessions. Mixed model analyses were used to examine the impact of environmental and group attributes on the outcome variables. Results: Background noise and time of day significantly affected outcome variables after controlling for participants' cognitive functioning and group topic. Background noise was related with decreased engagement and increased sleepiness. Activities conducted before noon were associated with increased sleepiness. Group size did not affect the outcome variables. There was little variation concerning temperature and light. Conclusions: These findings have implications for architectural and ongoing planning. The methodology presents a model for continuous quality improvement. The main components of the Comprehensive Process Model of Group Engagement significantly impacted group activity engagement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-146
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Volume35
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2020

Funding

FundersFunder number
Morris Justein Visiting Scholars Program
Rotman Family
Minerva Foundation3158329500

    Keywords

    • dementia
    • engagement
    • environmental characteristics
    • group activities
    • recreational groups

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