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Scand J Occup Ther. 2008 Mar;15(1):43-51.

Awareness through interaction in everyday occupations: experiences of people with Alzheimer's disease.

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Division of Occupational Therapy, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.


The aim of this study was to explore and describe the characteristics of awareness of the consequences of having Alzheimer's disease on everyday life occupations. Six community-dwelling participants with Alzheimer's disease were interviewed on repeated occasions about their lived experiences of everyday occupations. A phenomenological method was adopted for the analysis. The findings show that the participants discovered and explored the changes in how they performed everyday occupations in the context of their social relations and through immediate reflections on their forgetfulness. They attempted to handle the changes by adapting their behaviour. Awareness of the changes in their lives was evident in their reflections, as they tried to make sense of what was happening to them. This seemed to be related to an elusive perception of change in situations that they found impossible to influence. The participants reflected on the impact their condition had on other people near them. Their reflections also involved emotional reactions to the shortcomings they experienced. In conclusion, the findings show how these people with Alzheimer's disease were able to express awareness of the consequences of their illness through their reflections on their experiences of interaction with the occupations and the social environment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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