Benefits Of Dance Therapy For Dementia

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"This systematic review of the literature surrounding dance therapy for older adults with dementia serves to educate nurses working with the population of older adults with dementia about the associated benefits of dance therapy. There is a need for engaging interventions for older adults with dementia. Dance has been shown to increase feelings of wellbeing, alter behaviors, enhance memory and facilitate social interactions. To investigate whether dance interventions improve behaviors of adults suffering from dementia, research on this topic is necessary. A systematic review of English-language articles published between 1998 and 2016, focusing on the benefits of dance therapy with memory-impaired adults suffering from dementia, was conducted. Because of the limited number of sources, the search criteria included a seminal article published in 1998. Sixty-seven articles were assessed for eligibility through full review. For the purpose of this thesis, five articles met inclusion criteria. Upon review, the following information was found: dance encourages social interactions and physical exercise. Dance is an engaging activity for older adults with dementia, encouraging individuals to learn new behaviors, and improves implicit memory. Additionally, unlike other forms of exercise, dance promotes a strong connection between mind and body. Though the literature reflects remarkable consistency suggesting dance therapy is beneficial for older adults with dementia, future research exploring this area is important to nursing."

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