Priority 17 from the Seniors' Health (Alberta, Canada) PSP

UNCERTAINTY: How can behaviours associated with dementia (e.g., aggression) be most effectively managed through non-pharmacological approaches? (JLA PSP Priority 17)
Overall ranking 17
JLA question ID 0083/17
Explanatory note

Often in the later stages of the illness, people living with dementia develop challenging or so – called, responsive behaviours which may put themselves or their caregivers at risk of harm.  People felt that research should test the best ways of managing these behaviours without drugs which may often cause sedation or falls.


1. Woods, B., Spector, A. E., Prendergast, L., & Orrell, M. (2005). Cognitive stimulation to improve cognitive functioning in people with dementia. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. doi:10.1002/14651858.cd005562

2. Forbes, D., Forbes, S. C., Blake, C. M., Thiessen, E. J., & Forbes, S. (2015). Exercise programs for people with dementia. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. doi:10.1002/14651858.cd006489.pub4

3. Orgeta, V., Spector, A. E., & Orrell, M. (2011). Psychological treatments for depression and anxiety in dementia and mild cognitive impairment. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. doi:10.1002/14651858.cd009125

4. Möhler, R., Renom, A., Renom, H., & Meyer, G. (2012). Personally-tailored activities for improving psychosocial outcomes for people with dementia in long-term care. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. doi:10.1002/14651858.cd009812

Health Research Classification System category Generic health relevance
Extra information provided by this PSP
Original uncertainty examples Managing symptoms of dementia (ie aggression, full time care) is very challenging and finding assistance in the system from anyone with training in dementia is difficult, it seems to be just drugs which I don't want for him. 
Submitted by  1 Caregiver
PSP information
PSP unique ID 0083
PSP name Seniors' Health (Alberta, Canada)
Total number of uncertainties identified by this PSP. 97  (To see a full list of all uncertainties identified, please see the detailed spreadsheet held on the JLA website)
Date of priority setting workshop 13 August 2018