Animal Assisted Therapy Dementia

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Animal Assisted Therapy Dementia

Animal assisted therapy dementia is a treatment strategy that uses animals to improve the quality of life for those with cognitive impairments. Studies have demonstrated its ability to reduce behavioral and psychological symptoms associated with dementia such as anxiety, agitation, irritability, depression, loneliness, and withdrawal.

Pets can be an invaluable ally for people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia, providing companionship, unconditional love, and fun. Not only that but pets also serve as great communication channels and give patients a sense of purpose.

The human-animal bond is a deeply entrenched one. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), 60 percent of households in America own at least one pet.

Studies have demonstrated that animals can be effective therapists due to their nonjudgmental, compassionate, and non-critical nature. These traits may be especially helpful for patients who struggle with communication with others due to a lack of language abilities.

Animals that visit patients on a regular basis or live at the facility can offer many advantages to patients. For instance, animals may encourage patients to get active and reduce stress – both of which could potentially contribute to Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

Animal-assisted therapy (AAT) can be a rewarding way to help patients get their exercise, socialize, and boost their self-esteem. Plus, it offers them an enjoyable distraction from their regular tasks.

Another advantage of animal-assisted therapy is that it promotes independence in dementia patients. They may learn how to care for the animal or simply have fun interacting with it in a secure and enjoyable setting.

Animal-assisted therapy is the ideal treatment option for people with dementia, and this can be achieved through a pet therapist who will create an intervention plan that emphasizes interaction and bonding between patient and pet.

Therapy using animals such as dogs, cats, birds and even fish is possible. The pet therapist will determine which animal is most suitable for each individual receiving the therapy and then find an experienced animal handler to work with it.

Pet-assisted therapy can be done in a range of settings, such as hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers and other long-term care facilities. The therapists may include various therapeutic experiences with the animal such as petting, brushing and walking into each session.

Animal-assisted therapy offers many advantages, but may not be suitable for all patients with dementia. Some individuals lack physical capacity to care for a pet while others find the experience unpleasant. In such cases, patients’ families or primary healthcare provider should be consulted.

Animal-assisted therapy in dementia care is nothing new, yet it’s becoming increasingly popular. There are now a variety of organizations that offer pet-assisted therapy to those suffering from dementia, and numerous research studies have documented its beneficial effects on those affected by this condition.

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