Dyadic construction of dementia: meta-ethnography and behaviour-process synthesis
Coleston-Shields, Donna M.
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ABSTRACTObjectives: Good interaction with family caregivers helps maintain positive identity in people with dementia. However, research in this area is limited. We aimed to systematically review the dyadic experience of dementia caring. Method: We searched on five databases: MedLine, EMBASE, PsycInfo, ASSIA, and CINAHL. Eligible studies employed qualitative or mixed method design, reported the experience of dyads of dementia with no comorbid organic or psychiatric disorders. No restrictions were made on language, year of publication, sex or age of participants. Two independent researchers conducted the quality appraisal of studies. We synthesise data through meta-ethnography and developed a behavioural model to explain dyadic interaction.Results: Seventeen studies were included in the review. The meta-ethnography generated two third-order constructs: Personal orientation and noises. When people with dementia and their carers have dyadic-oriented goals, their behavioural responses may promote positive interaction. When only one partner has dyadic goals, context-related stress may affect the interaction, because of no perceived shared understanding of the situation.Conclusion: Our findings suggest that unequal power distribution within dyads, can cause significant stress, when coping strategies are impaired. We discussed implications for family carers, people with dementia, and health professionals deriving from greater understanding of dyadic dynamics to care.