The impact of montessori-based programmes on individuals with dementia living in residential aged care: A systematic review

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Objectives: This systematic review examined the effectiveness of Montessori-based programmes for individuals with dementia living in residential aged care. Methods: Nine databases were searched between January 2010 to October 2021, including Scopus, CINAHL, MEDLINE, Web of Science, SocINDEX with Full Text, PubMed, PsycINFO, Cochrane library and Cochrane Registry. Publications were included if they used Montessori-based programmes as interventions for individuals with dementia living in residential aged care and were qualitative, quantitative, mixed-method, or pilot studies. The quality of eligible studies was assessed using Joanna Briggs Institute critical appraisal instruments and the Mixed Method Critical Appraisal Tool. The findings were tabulated and narratively synthesised. Results: Fifteen studies were included in this review. The quality scores of the 15 studies ranged from 62 to 100 out of 100. Four key categories of outcomes were observed: (1) significantly improved engagement; (2) significantly improved mental health outcomes, including affect, depression, agitation, excessive eating and psychotropic medication prescriptions; (3) significantly improved feeding difficulty but mixed results regarding nutritional status; and (4) no significant changes in the activities of daily living and quality of life of individuals with dementia. Conclusion: Cognitive capacity, personal preferences, individual care needs and the design of Montessori-based activities are pivotal to tailoring personalised Montessori-based activities for individuals with dementia in residential aged care and to maximise intervention outcomes. The synergistic effect of integrating Spaced Retrieval with Montessori-based activities in improving the eating ability and nutritional status of individuals with dementia was also noticed. The study summarised evidence about the effectiveness of Montessori-based programmes for individuals with dementia and informed healthcare professionals about how to implement individualised Montessori-based programmes.

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Funding Sponsor

China Scholarship Council



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