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This paper seeks to address the issue of “Doll Therapy in treatment of Dementia patients.” The problem warranting this study is the fear of increased dementia patients within the aging population. Basically, three objectives derived under this study are; to establish a practical approach for the implementation and evaluation of the doll therapy for long term care unit to dementia caregivers, determine the efficacy of implementing the doll therapy to dementia patients in a care unit, and evaluate the feasibility of implementation of the doll therapy to dementia patients to prevent long-term complications to the elderly. The target population will be 20 respondents from Dementia Care Center for Alzheimer’s disease, Ohio State. The study is of importance to families and care givers of dementia patients. The PICOT model of research design shall be embraced. Data will be collected using questionnaires and observation. Analysis will be both qualitative and quantitative. Ideally, a practical approach will be followed unlike prior studies that focus on experts’ knowledge however time is a possible limitation to this study. A Plagiarized Sample Paper: ORDER YOUR PAPER NOW


Structurally this paper deals with “Doll Therapy in treatment of Dementia patients.” Dementia is a common condition to the aging population within the age bracket of 65-85 with Alzheimer’s type being the most common. Studies show that in US at least 10% of victims over the 65 years age brackets suffer from this condition whereas 50% of the victims are over the 85 years age brackets. This explains the reason why most of the long term care facility (LTCF) occupants are 65 years and above. The risk of development of dementia increases with age and manifests itself through malnutrition, sleeping problems, agitation, depressions, and wandering. (Stephens, A et al., 2013).This study hence seeks to establish a practical approach for the implementation and evaluation of the doll therapy for long term care unit to dementia caregivers, determine the efficacy of implementing the doll therapy to dementia patients in a care unit, and evaluate the feasibility of implementation of the doll therapy to dementia patients to prevent long-term complications to the elderly.


The study shall embrace the “PICOT Model” designed by Pezzati R., (2014).This shall include elements such as (P) selecting institutionalized patients with the (O) aim of decreasing agitation and behavioral disturbance in dementia patients by providing doll therapy (C) study patients’ behaviors with no doll therapy (O) to manage behavioral and psychological disorders in these patients (T) residing within a long term facility. The study is scheduled to take place within a month to a pilot study that would help form an evaluation tool for the doll therapy as well as observe important elements significant to this study (Mitchell & Donnell, 2013).

Target Population

The ‘Doll Therapy in Dementia Patients’ shall focus on elderly people in LTCFs. This population would comprise of patients from the age brackets of 65years. Ideally, a total of 20 respondents 18 of which would be dementia patients and the remaining 2 would be caretakers of dementia patients, especially the nursing assistants who work on a daily basis with the patients. Some of the special elements to be observed from dementia patients would include; patients’ ability to caress the doll, visual acuity to see the doll, ability to accept the doll offered. The setting would be Dementia Care Center for Alzheimer’s disease. This is a 60 bed skilled nursing facility in Ohio State. This facility is easily accessible and located among other healthcare facilities.


Anticipated areas would be corporation from caregivers, family members, the staff, and the patients. The respondents especially the nurses would be having a huge workload hence limited time to participate in the exercise. Some may possibly ask for a pay for their time.

Significance of the Study

This study is of significant use to medical practitioners, researchers as well as families with dementia patients. It gives insight of the best approaches towards doll therapy in ensuring that patients’ self-esteem is revived as well as reducing agitation for a stable livelihood.

Research Objectives

This study aims at meeting the following objectives:

  1. To establish a practical approach for the implementation and evaluation of the doll therapy for long term care unit to dementia caregivers.
  2. To determine the efficacy of implementing the doll therapy to dementia patients in a care unit.
  3. To evaluate the feasibility of implementation of the doll therapy to dementia patients to prevent long-term complications to the elderly.


Literature Review

Dementia is very common diagnosis in elderly which causes cognitive, behavioral and emotional disturbances and makes big influence on patients’ and caregivers health.  According to Pezzati R., (2014), dementia present in 40-50% of institutionalized patients. Current studies are focused on resolution of emotional disturbances in patients and financial cost (Pezzati R., et al., 2014). The new International Psycho geriatric Association, 2012 recommendations focused on non-pharmacological interventions in addition to medications for better treatments of behavioral disturbances in patients with dementia.  In the study, Bowlby’s theory of attachment was applied to observe results from Doll therapy (Pezzati R., et al., 2014).  One of the hypothesis suggested is that during Doll therapy patient with dementia experience feelings which leads to initiation of care giving and inspection systems in addition to attachment one. Effectiveness of Doll therapy supported by improvement in connection with environment and re-activation of the care giving and exploration systems (Pezzati R., et al., 2014).

According to (Mitchell & Donnell, 2013), dementia is defined as” an acquired organic mental disorder that causes loss of intellectual ability that interferes with social and occupational functioning. This dysfunction is multifaceted and involves judgment, personality, attention, language, memory, behavior, spatial relations and abstract thought among other functions (Mitchell & Donnell, 2013). Symptoms of dementia include; anxiety, sleeplessness, agitation, inability to care for self, defiance, violent behavior, and other unsafe actions.

Traditionally, restricted and restrained movements are among the treatment methods that were used to control dementia victims from self harm (Fernandez, R., et al., 2014). Over the time, these two methods (restrain and restriction) were reported abusive and undesirable (Fernandez, R., et al., 2014). Other treatment methods such as use of chemicals to control unsafe behavior were taken into account. With time, chemicals were associated to adverse harms such death and digression of cognitive faculties hence a need to explore alternative ways of dementia treatment.

Studies indicate that attachment to others is a common element to adults with dementia. For example, speaking about or searching deceased relatives as if they are present or carrying around objects such as shoes. This further warrants the effectiveness of using doll as a therapy that helps dementia patients overcome their inner distress and agitation.

Dementia Care, Australia (2012) defines the “doll therapy”   as,” A wise and mindful use of dolls for their symbolic significance to help improve emotional state of people with dementia (P.1).” This treatment method makes dementia people feel useful. (Edvardsson, Petersson, Sjogren, Lindkvist & Sandman, 2014), conducted qualitative research on the use of doll therapy on dementia patients and established that this treatment method proved effective since it cooled down the distress and agitation of patients. Improvement of mood, cooperation during feeding, going to the toilet, and interacting with others were observed as positive behavior change pattern from the respondents.

Data Analysis and Critical  Appraisal

The study shall embrace observation of the respondents. For instance, their routinely activities, response to the doll at their glance, emotions such as happiness, sadness, anxiety, and isolation will be taken into account to measure desirable characteristics fit for this study. Semi structured questionnaires will equally be used to obtain the response from caregivers. The questionnaires will be open-ended to allow the respondents freedom. However, some closed ended questions will be used to ensure the research obtains its objectivity and gather demographic information and other statistical data. The obtained data shall be entered in excel sheets.

Most of the articles related to doll therapy were descriptive in nature and based on expert opinions. In all the cases, there was no practical approach on implementation of doll therapy for dementia patients. This study uses practical approach and distinctively engages the dementia patients in the study to meet the objectives.

Synthesis, Interpretation and Preparation of Results

Data shall be presented in figures, pie-chart diagrams, and tables. Percentages will equally be calculated followed by brief explanations to describe the numerical figures obtained. Caregivers would help in rating participants’ behavior on doll therapy with a rating criterion from 1-5. This will ensure both qualitative and quantitative data are achieved and fill the research gaps on the current studies.


In a nutshell, the literature above is only limited to scholarly knowledge and publications. There is less focus on practical approach which this paper shall mainly focus on by including dementia patients in the study to give a clear insight. Ideally, future researchers should base on more practical approach than theoretical. A Plagiarized Sample Paper: ORDER YOUR PAPER NOW


Edvardsson, D., Petersson L., Sjogren K., Lindkvist M., Sandman PO., (2014). Routine actions for individuals with dementia in inhabited aged care: associations with person‐centredness and value of life. International Journal of Older People Nursing, 9(4), 269-276.

Fernandez, R., et al. (2014). Consequence of doll therapy in handling perplexing behaviors in persons with dementia: a systematic review. JBI Database of Systematic Reviews     and Implementation Reports, 12(8), 330-363.

Mitchell, G. & O’Donnell, H. (2013). Therapeutic use of doll therapy in dementia. British Journal of Nursing, 22(6)

Pezzati R., Molteni V., Bani M., Settanta C., Grazia Di Maggio M., Villa I., Ardito R. (2014). Is Doll therapy able to preserve or promote attachment in people with Cognitive, emotional and behavioral issues? 7, 1-7. Doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00342

Stephens, A et al. (2013). An exploration into the relationships people with dementia has with physical objects: An ethnographic study. Dementia, 12(6), 697-712.

Turner, F. & Shepherd M. (2014). Doll Therapy in dementia care: A review of current literature. Communicare, 1 (1).


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