The Arts in the Treatment of Dementia
Department of Neurology and Psychology, Ideas, Center of Psychology, Neuroscience, Art, Greece
Dr. Sylva Sarafidou, Department of Neurology and Psychology, Ideas, Center of Psychology, Neuroscience, Art, Greece.
Keywords: Dementia; Art Therapy; Cognitive Symptomatology
Dementia is a complex neurodegenerative condition, with many growing cognitive symptoms. Still, dementia can lead to a variety of other symptoms as well, such as emotional, and behavioral, all of which interact and enhance each other. The disorder is treated through psychotherapeutic approaches targeting the emotions and the experience of living with the condition, or through cognitive reinforcement, targeting the cognitive symptomatology. The psychosocial treatment of dementia should aim at addressing all the symptoms, and not one category alone, in order to be effective. The goals of the treatment are cognitive, emotional, and behavioral, all at the same time, fact which is challenging in reality.
In order to achieve all these goals, the arts and art related therapies can be utilized. Although in a first glance the arts may not seem suitable for individuals with dementia, growing evidence suggests that they can allow the effective targeting of all the needs of the person. The use of the arts in dementia has several benefits, and can be a practical approach.
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