Monday, April 30, 2018

Dementia Spirituality Support (Nurse Research, Video 3:53)

Spirituality refers to people’s search for answers to the meaning of life and their relationship with the sacred. Involvement with a particular religion is not required to be spiritual. Coping skills related to spirituality often empower patients with a layer of strength to face each day with renewed joy in knowing their spirits are reinforced. This includes older adults living with dementia.

Nurses caring for people with dementia are in positions to provide spiritual support for them. In a study interviewing nurses providing dementia spiritual support, nurses indicated they viewed this practice as part of person-centered care. Through learning about residents individual spiritual backgrounds, their verbal and nonverbal expressions, nurses were able to understand and respect spiritual needs.

Person-centered, spiritual concern for people with and without dementia can come from a variety of perspectives. This consideration is important in the provision of comprehensive care. By understanding the importance of spirituality in patients’ lives, healthcare workers and other caregivers can create better plans of encouragement for them. These plans could include supportive practices for them such as music, yoga, meditation, nature, prayer, or referral to spiritual or religious counselors.

This video features an older adult in memory care at Peregrine Senior Living in New York. Her physical and emotional expressions of enjoyment reveal how favored gospel songs from the past continue to enhance her spiritual experiences in the present.

Frances Shani Parker, Author
Becoming Dead Right: A Hospice Volunteer in Urban Nursing Homes is available in paperback and e-book editions in America and other countries at online and offline booksellers.
Hospice and Nursing Homes Blog


  1. A temporary fix though I do not deny its value it does not offer any medical comfort to the patient. Take it from there and work and devlop a biomarkers strategy then you can go home proud of your achievement.

    1. Actually, many on social media were proud of the achievement in the video.