Visual Nursing Home

Typically, when people think about growing old, they think about spending their weekends with the grandkids, going to church on a bright and sunny Sunday morning or even going to the lake for the day and fishing. Nobody really, truly thinks about what life is like when you can no longer take care of yourself. You will make it to that point eventually in your life, but nobody should think of moving into a retirement home as a bad thing! Things change with time, including these facilities.

For instance, Chia-Hsiu Chang conducted a study investigating the effect on the resident’s satisfaction when bringing a visual art-based environment into the facility. He placed pictures representing the local culture on the walls to see if the residents’ had a change in their daily lives. The results concluded that in general, participants were content with the redesign and felt happy. Visual art is a brilliant method to use and helps the residents reminisce and will eventually cultivate their life’s later in life.

The author had several references to back up his findings and the article was very easy to interpret. Moreover, another article claims that music therapy could indeed enrich the lives of those who are in a retirement home. The author, Huei-Chuan Sung, manages a study on exploring the attitudes of nursing staff and the use of music for people with dementia in these long term care facilities. The findings were that most of the staff were confident that the music would help bring some of these residents back to life again.

However, only 30% had practiced using music with the residents. This percentage is so low due to limited knowledge and skills, or not having the time and resources. The author definitely backs up her article with references, three pages to be specific. I can relate to both of these articles and they hit very close to home. I have personally practiced both techniques and agree that both components do in fact work and make a huge difference in the life of a resident who no longer has anything left from their past.

All in all, both articles are very intriguing, especially if you do not have any experience with this type of work, but Huei-Chuan Sung’s article “Exploring Nursing Staff’s Attitudes and Use of Music for Older People with Dementia in Long-Term Care Facilities” had more facts and results in the study and is the better article. Visual art will always give us a new appreciation in life. Without pictures, nobody would ever remember historical moments from the past. We would just have empty stories.

Chia-Hsiu Chang, who is a Registered Nurse and also has a Master of Science degree, hosted an investigation to study the effect of an art-based friendly living environment and the residents’ satisfaction. In 2013, they used a pre-experimental design. Thirty-three residents were enlisted to be a part of a pre- and post-test study. These residents lived in a flour floored building, each person from different floors. Chang stated in the article that “the facility was interspersed using a variety of artwork, reminiscence, and gardening based on the local culture and history (Chang 107).

To start the study forty-eight participants were recruited from the same facility in Taiwan. Nonetheless, they could not keep all of the residents in the yearlong study because most participants were very fragile and could hardly move, ten had died, two refused, and three had been discharged. So at the end of the year only thirty-three were left, twenty-seven (81. 8%) being women and six (18. 2%) being men, and forty-five percent were extremely dependent with the activities of daily living. These residents had to meet certain requirements.

For example, they had to live in the retirement home fore three months and they all had no environmental adaptation problems assessed by social workers, also they had to answer eight out of ten questions that were asked, correctly. The test showed accuracy and validity. Eventually, as the results gathered, the findings were that in general, members were satisfied with the renovation and were much happier reliving their younger year. Most of the participants felt and looked less stressed with the changes.

Most retirement homes are affiliated with hospitals and hospice, and have uniformed rooms with with same old bed and dresser from the last resident who had stayed in that room, but the change of scenery really excited the residents and opened their imagination and their youthfulness. The author hoped this study would carry their delighted attitudes with them for their later years. The strategies and ideas in “The Effectiveness of Visual Art on Environment in Nursing Home” are very pinpointing and precise. The author gave us appropriate evidence and had a systematic investigation.

She starts her article off with the purpose of the writing, then moves to how she designed the process, then talks about the methods she used, what her findings were, and the clinical relevance the article had. After that little introduction she moved to the more detailed stuff like what each theme was for floor of the facility. Next she states that she had created a scale called the “The Satisfaction with Living Environment at Nursing Home Scale (SLE-NHS)” (Chang 107) to measure the satisfaction of the nursing home environment. She then lists her results from the SLE-NHS and writes her claims and conclusion.

As you can tell it was a well put together academic journal. Furthermore, one claim she states in her article is that nursing homes around the world, no matter their location or type of residents, should collaborate with the staff and directors about possibly changing the boring and drabby floral pictures, or the pictures of people walking in the park, or that cute little bakery that was painted, to something along the lines of the popular stars in the residents past years that they would remember, or that favorite musical all the residents forgot they knew and loved.

People who do not spend their time in nursing home facilities do not get that what we think are simple changes are really actually monumental changes for residents and could change their outlook on living in that type of environment, if they want to be there or not. With that being said, another article, “Exploring nursing staff’s attitudes and use of music for older people with dementia in long-term care facilities” mentions using music for people with dementia in long-term care facilities. This article is very relatable to the last.

The author, Huei-Chuan Sung, explores how willing nursing staff would be when it came to using music as a sort of reminiscing for the residents. She first asked the staff what their attitudes were towards helping the residents with dementia listen to music. She also asked what extend do they use music in the facility, and what influences the staff’s use of music for the residents with dementia. After these questions were asked 285 nurses and assistances met the requirements of working for at least three months and had taken care of residents with dementia.

Sixteen long-term facilities in eastern Taiwan and 214 nursing staff completed the questionnaires. After she had gotten the approval from the research ethic review committee of a university in Taiwan and sought approval from the directors of the retirement home, they started. The sample had 191 (89%) women and 23 (11%) men. The staff ranged from nineteen years old to sixty-two. The results were that “nursing home staff in this sample held positive attitudes towards the use of music for older people with dementia” (Sung 1776).

The conclusion also showed that nursing staff in these facilities need more training and equipment and that since no past studies have happened then the study can provide baseline data for developing programs to help train staff and even the residents. This was the first study, which explored nursing staff and how ready and equipped they were for music therapy. Sungs main claims were that in the past we had nothing to enhance the lives of those living in a retirement home. But now she has found a way for each and every resident to connect with their past, and music is something they could never forget so it will always be an easy go to.

Also her strategies and studies in this article are very well drawn out. She has all the information and references to prove her theory and the article is very well organized. While both academic journals have similar features, they both are very different. For instance, in the first article written by Chang, her study actually interacts with the residents and she has proven a change in the residents’ attitudes by placing artwork on the wall that the residents can relate to. In contrast, the second article written by Sung shows a study done on the nursing staff alone, not the actual residents.

So although she has more than enough references to back her up there is no actual, sufficient proof in her study that music could change the lives of the residents and this is a major weakness in her article and future researchers would find this fearful. In addition to both articles, they are very much the same. Each article states that there needs to be a change in the daily life in a retirement home, whether that is with music or with art and decorations. In the same way, they also had the same layout.

Both articles had a study conducted and each had a method, design, results, and conclusion. The authors also had the same viewpoint which was nice to read about. So the fact that they were so similar, yet so far apart, really makes this topic intriguing. In conclusion, both articles had the same perspective but different approaches. Idea wise, I loved reading about how music could help future residents because honestly what resident wouldn’t like to revisit their favorite song from when they were in their twenties or thirties?

However, Chang had the stronger article because she had actual proof from residents, not just staff and there were major changes in her study that was conducted, and she had several valuable references. I believe for future research both articles would be awesome candidates. Each article had a certain system and both had positive results at the end of their experiment. I believe any research or study that has a positive outcome would benefit other researchers.