Hong Kong is a developed society with the longest life expectancy on the earth. Based on the Census and Statistics Division, there have been 2.14 million seniors aged 60 or above by mid-2022, accounting for greater than 1 / 4 (29.4%) of the full inhabitants. Analysis exhibits that about one in ten seniors suffers from despair, a significant concern for native psychological well being points.
Geriatric despair usually brings detrimental penalties equivalent to diminished cognitive skill, worsening therapy outcomes of medical issues, and better mortality among the many aged.
With the burgeoning growing older inhabitants in Hong Kong and the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the variety of aged affected by depressive signs in recent times has been growing. Research have discovered that aged in Hong Kong have proven considerably extra depressive signs than their counterparts from Taiwan and Guangzhou, but native consideration and help for these with gentle to average despair are very restricted.
A neighborhood venture aiming to advertise geriatric psychological well being utilizing Expressive Arts-based Intervention (EABI) was launched between July 2017 and June 2021 by the Middle on Behavioral Well being (CBH) of The College of Hong Kong. EABI is likely one of the non-pharmacological interventions with a rising recognition worldwide. It refers to a multimodal strategy, which makes use of the creation course of of various artwork kinds (ie, visible artwork, music, dance motion, drama and artistic writing) to advertise private development and therapeutic.
All through the method of growing older, adjustments in a single’s life and wellness may very well be an indescribable expertise. EABI offers a non-verbal approach for the aged to precise their ideas and emotions. It additionally encourages them to make use of their creativeness and creativity to interrupt by way of the boundaries of growing older. With the emphasis on aesthetic appreciation, they may additionally study to understand one another’s magnificence and strengths. All these parts might assist improve the bodily, psychosocial and religious well-being, in addition to the general high quality of lifetime of the aged.
To sort out the growing instances of geriatric despair and maximize the variety of beneficiaries, CBH organized a lot of public instructional talks to boost public consciousness of geriatric despair and inspired the general public to succeed in out to these in want.
The staff additionally designed an EABI protocol for the aged, which consisted of eight 90-minute classes. The contents of the protocol had been delivered to the frontline employees of native aged facilities by way of a “train-the-trainer” strategy to reinforce their information and abilities in utilizing EABI to help the aged in want.
The coaching was delivered by two registered expressive arts therapists. It was a three-day program with a complete of 18 contact hours. The coaching started with an introduction of the prevalence and considerations of geriatric despair, in addition to the rules of EABI, adopted by experiential studying of all of the art-making processes designed for the aged in line with the EABI protocol.
Facilitation abilities and considerations about conducting EABI with the aged had been illustrated. After the coaching, the frontline employees might change into the venture’s ambassadors and had been required to conduct two EABI teams on the organizations they served to help the aged with gentle to average depressive signs. CBH additionally offered particular person follow-up to the aged who wanted intensive psychosocial help providers upon referral from the ambassadors.
Over the previous 4 years, the venture carried out six public instructional talks, seven skilled coaching classes, 283 EABI teams, 692 particular person follow-up classes and 4 artwork exhibitions, benefiting over 2,207 aged, 260 professionals and 37,561 neighborhood members.
The analysis staff of CBH carried out an analysis research on 1) the effectiveness of EABI in relieving the aged’s depressive signs, in addition to bettering their high quality of life, perceived social help, and religious well-being; and a pair of) the coaching effectiveness in enhancing the ambassadors’ altruism degree in making use of EABI of their work settings.
The taking part aged needed to full a questionnaire earlier than and after the EABI, whereas the ambassadors wanted to finish a questionnaire earlier than and after the coaching, in addition to upon the completion of the EABI. Among the aged and ambassadors had been additionally invited to attend a spotlight group interview upon program completion to share their experiences with the analysis staff.
The staff efficiently recruited a complete of 1,089 aged and 260 ambassadors to take part within the research. The findings are as follows:
1. The quantitative findings confirmed:
(i) There have been vital enhancements in depressive signs, total high quality of life and religious well-being among the many aged after taking part within the EABI. There was additionally a major enhance within the common amount and satisfaction rating of social help.
(ii) Ambassadors’ altruistic angle and self-efficacy to use EABI of their work settings elevated considerably after the coaching.
2. The main focus group interviews revealed:
(i) The bodily, psychosocial and religious well-beings of the aged had been improved. The music and dance actions within the EABI offered them with a possibility to train their our bodies, which helped improve the connection between their physique and mind. The art-making course of was enjoyable and stress-free, so the aged might develop a way of accomplishment and categorical their tales and emotions extra simply. It helped soothe their disagreeable emotions. The group additionally provided them an opportunity to find the enjoyment of taking part in neighborhood actions, which in flip strengthened their reference to others and enhanced their motivation to take part in different actions sooner or later.
(ii) The coaching program helped improve the ambassadors’ information of EABI, enrich their present abilities, and enhance their skill to empathize with the aged.
Total, the findings of this research confirmed the effectiveness of the EABI in assuaging the aged’s depressive signs and bettering their high quality of life, perceived social help and religious well-being. Professor Rainbow Ho, Director of CBH, hopes that this venture will change into a seed for EABI to be extra extensively accepted and utilized to the holistic care of the aged.
Supplied by The College of Hong Kong
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