The experience of relations in persons with dementia: A systematic meta-synthesis
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionDementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders. 2016, 42 (5-6), 342-368. 10.1159/000452404
Background: Dementia influences a person's experience of social relationships, as described in several studies. In this systematic meta-synthesis of qualitative studies, we aim to interpret and synthesize the experiences of persons with dementias and their relations with others. Summary: Living with dementia changes life, leading to new social roles and different social statuses. Persons with dementia experience being disconnected and dependent on others, feeling like being a burden, and being a person who is treated in paternalistic ways. Family, friends and others with dementia might play significant roles in their ability to maintain a meaningful life. Key Messages: Three categories emerged from the data, change in life, change in relations, and maintenance of meaningful aspects in life; these categories are intertwined and essential in sustaining a lifeline for persons with dementia. The comprehensive meaning of the material is understood as the expression: Living a meaningful life in relational changes.