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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter 2021

Contribution of Active Cues to Arts & Dementia

From the book Arts & Dementia

  • Claire Bernaards and Manon Kuipers


Dementia interferes with the lives of millions of people across the world. Since there is no cure for dementia, the focus of dementia care shifts to Quality of Life (QoL). QoL is a subjective multidimensional concept with a lack of consensus on the dimensions that belong to it. The main goal of this study was to investigate how employees at residential care homes for individuals living with dementia assess the use of the Tovertafel Original apparatus and how it contributes to QoL. The Tovertafel is an innovation created especially for elderly people in the mid to late stages of dementia. Using light projections, the users are challenged to become active and engage with each other in a playful manner. Although there is some evidence that the Tovertafel improves QoL, there are still many questions that need to be answered. According to carers, all categories that were preselected from existing measurement scales were important for QoL in people living with dementia. The following categories were added to this list - being accepted by your loved ones, dignity, having control over your life, loss of independence, safety, and a good relationship between carers and family members. The Tovertafel has an impact on multiple aspects of QoL. Carers most frequently mentioned its positive impact on activating people, social interaction, and having fun. Furthermore, the Tovertafel reduces both restless and tense behavior and negative emotions in residents, and offers carers the opportunity to engage with them in a different way. According to carers, ‘social relations’ and ‘positive emotions’ were the two categories most clearly affected by using the Tovertafel. This study can be used to provide direction for future game development by creating a focus towards categories that Tovertafel games do not sufficiently cover yet.

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