Horticultural Therapy Programs Enhancing Quality of Life and Reducing Depression and Burden for Caregivers of Elderly with Dementia
Journal of people, plants, and environment
and objective: The problem that follows the increase of dementia patients is the burden of caregivers caring for dementia patients. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of horticultural therapy programs improving the quality of life and reducing the depression and burden of caregivers of the elderly with dementia. Methods: In this study, 19 caregivers of the elderly with dementia were selected, and the experiment was conducted by dividing the control group (n=9) and the
... 9) and the experimental group (n=10) by random distribution. The experimental group was given eight horticultural therapy programs twice a week for a total of 4 weeks. Subjects were assessed using the depression(CES-D), quality of Life (WHOQOL-BREF), and care burden scales. The evaluation results were verified at a 95% significance level using descriptive statistics, the Mann-Whitney U test, and Wilcoxon signed-rank test. Results: In the case of depression, the control group's score tended to increase, and the experimental group's score appeared to decrease, but it was not a statistically significant change. In the quality of life, the control group was not statistically significant, but scores decreased overall. On the other hand, in the experimental group, the general quality of life increased significantly from 11.60 to 14.20 points (p = .02), and the total quality of life increased to a marginally significant level from 61.59 points to 68.85 points (p = .059). In the post-test of the total care burden score, a marginally significant difference was found between the control group (94.44 points) and the experimental group (82.50 points; p = .079). Conclusion: This study confirmed the applicability to reduce the burden of caregiving and improve the deterioration of quality of life of the caregivers. In particular, the results will serve as an opportunity to confirm accessibility in a new way to support the caregiver of dementia patients by demonstrating the applicability of horticultural therapy at a time when problems such as the burden of supporting the caregiver are emerging as social problems.