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The use of life stories and its influence on persons with dementia, their relatives and staff: a systematic mixed studies review
Östfold university Norway.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8296-7682
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Health Sciences (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2667-4025
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Health Sciences (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9608-336X
Östfold university, Norway.
2017 (English)In: BMC Nursing, ISSN 1472-6955, E-ISSN 1472-6955, Vol. 16, article id 28Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: Dementia is an important predictor of nursing home admissions. Due to progressive dementia symptoms, over time it becomes difficult for persons with dementia to communicate their wishes and participate in decisions concerning their everyday lives. Their well-being, sense of dignity, integrity and personhood are at risk. The persons' life stories have been highlighted as particularly important in dementia care and are referred to as seeing the person beyond the dementia. The aim of this study was to explore and describe the use of life stories and its influence on persons with dementia living in nursing homes, their relatives and staff.

METHODS: A systematic mixed studies review was conducted. The literature searches were performed in the following databases: CINAHL, PubMed and PsycINFO and the Cochrane library, as well as by hand searching references in the studies included. An updated search was performed eight months after the first search. Data was synthesised inspired by integrative analysis.

RESULTS: Three studies using quantitative design and two studies (presented in three papers) using qualitative design representing research from 2006 to 2015 were included in the review. Life stories generally had a positive influence on the persons with dementia, their relatives, and staff. The use of life stories might contribute to 'Maintenance of the person with dementia as a whole person rather than a demented patient'. On the other hand, enabling persons with dementia to tell their own story could be a challenge. For the staff it could be challenging when sensitive information emerged uninvited. Involving relatives could also be difficult as to whose story were uncovered.

CONCLUSIONS: The use of person's life story might be of significance, but there is not enough evidence to make any statement about its importance as the research is scarce. Studies, including randomised controlled trials, are needed to measure the impact of life story work on the physiological and psychological aspects of persons with dementia, and also how it influences their relatives and staff.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BioMed Central, 2017. Vol. 16, article id 28
Keywords [en]
Dementia, Life stories, Nursing home, Systematic mixed studies review
National Category
Nursing
Research subject
Nursing Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-62672DOI: 10.1186/s12912-017-0223-5PubMedID: 28588424OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-62672DiVA, id: diva2:1133522
Available from: 2017-08-16 Created: 2017-08-16 Last updated: 2018-06-12Bibliographically approved

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Abrahamsen Grøndahl, VigdisPersenius, MonaBååth, Carina

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