Enriched Gardens help seniors with dementia make real-world gains in cognition and independence

From a paper published in Jun 2021 in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Research and Therapy

Bourdon, E., Belmin, J. Enriched gardens improve cognition and independence of nursing home residents with dementia: a pilot controlled trialAlz Res Therapy 13, 116 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13195-021-00849-w 

A study conducted with 120 nursing homes residents with dementia shows the benefits of enriched gardens on key health indicators such as cognitive function and mobility, compared to conventional sensory gardens and no visits to any garden.

The participants were divided into three groups. Nursing home staff invited residents to visit either an enriched garden or a conventional sensory garden depending on their group allocation. The third group did not visit any garden.

The study found that only the group that visited the enriched gardens showed significant improvements in cognitive function, independence for activities of daily living, and risk of falls compared to the other groups.

The researchers used the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) to measure cognitive impairment and Independence for activities of daily living (ADL) and risk of falls (unipodal stance and timed up and go – (TUG)) were assessed at baseline and after 6 months.

Environmental Enrichment is an organized and scientifically-driven way of presenting new experiences designed to trigger the mechanisms of brain plasticity.

You can learn more about the therapeutic benefits of enriched gardens here: https://o-ubicampi.com/

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