Title

Research Poster Session - The construction of occupations for elderly persons with dementia

Location

Magnolia Room

Start Time

17-10-2013 6:30 PM

End Time

17-10-2013 8:30 PM

Abstract

Introduction

Interrupted actions are often reported for elderly persons with dementia. Although occupations are generally identified as broad classes, the interruption of occupations for the elderly occurs at various levels. The process of emergence and transformation of occupations was studied by the author in elderly residents of a 9 resident Long-Term Care Facility for dementia patients in Hokkaido, Japan. The participant in this study was a woman about whom the author had reservations regarding whether her daily routines were actually occupations. The object therefore was to understand the processes used by the participant for the construction of occupations by reviewing her performance and experiences in daily routines.

Methods

The participant was an elderly woman in her 90’s with moderate Alzheimer’s who had severe impairment of memory but relatively good communication skills. Data collection was carried out utilizing a fieldwork approach for approximately one year, using content analysis and phenomenological methods for data analysis with ethics approval obtained from the author’s university.

Results

Harvey et al (2010) discussed the temporal beginning and end points of the structure of occupations. For the participant, “writing down on paper”, one of her daily routines in the morning, didn’t necessarily have a definite end point and sometimes ceased only when interrupted. During this routine of “writing down on paper”, it was observed that she repeatedly checked what she had written. This indicated to the author that she had possibly lost track of either the purpose for and or exactly what she had been writing. Because the sequence of actions she used in this and her other occupations was easily disturbed by other influences or environmental changes her routine lacked unity as an occupation. Her narrative suggested that due to those disturbances in her routines she felt a lack of accomplishment in those occupations. These findings supported the suggestion by Harvey et al (2010) that intrinsic, extrinsic and contextual factors shape and influence occupational behavior.

Conclusion

In this study, the concept that “the lack of occupational unity in behaviors” and “the loss of context” could bring about difficulty in the process of constructing occupation was identified. However, whether these situations also occur at a more complex level of occupational class - in contrast to the interruption of actions – isn’t known. Further study to understand the construction process of occupation for elderly persons with dementia needs to be done in order to identify this occurrence in a broader class of occupations.

References

Andrew S. Harvey and Wendy Pentland (2010). What Do people Do? In C. H. Christiansen & E. A. Townsend (Eds.), Introduction to Occupation: The art and science of living second edition (pp.101-133). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Oct 17th, 6:30 PM Oct 17th, 8:30 PM

Research Poster Session - The construction of occupations for elderly persons with dementia

Magnolia Room

Introduction

Interrupted actions are often reported for elderly persons with dementia. Although occupations are generally identified as broad classes, the interruption of occupations for the elderly occurs at various levels. The process of emergence and transformation of occupations was studied by the author in elderly residents of a 9 resident Long-Term Care Facility for dementia patients in Hokkaido, Japan. The participant in this study was a woman about whom the author had reservations regarding whether her daily routines were actually occupations. The object therefore was to understand the processes used by the participant for the construction of occupations by reviewing her performance and experiences in daily routines.

Methods

The participant was an elderly woman in her 90’s with moderate Alzheimer’s who had severe impairment of memory but relatively good communication skills. Data collection was carried out utilizing a fieldwork approach for approximately one year, using content analysis and phenomenological methods for data analysis with ethics approval obtained from the author’s university.

Results

Harvey et al (2010) discussed the temporal beginning and end points of the structure of occupations. For the participant, “writing down on paper”, one of her daily routines in the morning, didn’t necessarily have a definite end point and sometimes ceased only when interrupted. During this routine of “writing down on paper”, it was observed that she repeatedly checked what she had written. This indicated to the author that she had possibly lost track of either the purpose for and or exactly what she had been writing. Because the sequence of actions she used in this and her other occupations was easily disturbed by other influences or environmental changes her routine lacked unity as an occupation. Her narrative suggested that due to those disturbances in her routines she felt a lack of accomplishment in those occupations. These findings supported the suggestion by Harvey et al (2010) that intrinsic, extrinsic and contextual factors shape and influence occupational behavior.

Conclusion

In this study, the concept that “the lack of occupational unity in behaviors” and “the loss of context” could bring about difficulty in the process of constructing occupation was identified. However, whether these situations also occur at a more complex level of occupational class - in contrast to the interruption of actions – isn’t known. Further study to understand the construction process of occupation for elderly persons with dementia needs to be done in order to identify this occurrence in a broader class of occupations.