UTILIZATION OF HORTICULTURAL THERAPY FOR ELDERLY PERSONS IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT
In this paper the use of horticultural therapy in geriatric care is viewed within the context of sensory stimulation and its benefits. Beneficial characteristics of horticultural therapy activities are summarized. All horticultural therapeutic activities provide multiple sensory stimulation, often three or four senses are stimulated within one activity. Multi-sensory stimulation is beneficial to a wide variety of conditions typical of geriatric patients. Horticultural therapeutic activities can be expected to be effective with paralysis, mental disorders, akinesia, dependence and range of motion. Specifically, craft activities are found to be effective with reducing negative effects and, deterioration of balance control in seated position and dementia; cultivation activities are found to be effective with deterioration of hand motor skills, spasticity and osteoporosis. Overall, it is recommended that horticultural therapy as a care technique with elderly persons should be established in a structured manner, identifying the senses that need to be stimulated in response to the subjects symptoms, and evaluating the subjects progress as demonstrated in this study. Horticultural therapy for elderly persons is often carried out in urban environments, and thus relegated to relatively small areas. This is certainly the case in Japan. Therefore, development of a garden design technology that can be effectively used in indoor activity is prerequisite for maximizing the benefits of horticultural therapy.
Koura, S., Oshikawa, T., Ogawa, N., Snyder, S.M., Nagatomo, M. and Nishikawa, C. (2010). UTILIZATION OF HORTICULTURAL THERAPY FOR ELDERLY PERSONS IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT. Acta Hortic. 881, 865-868
horticultural therapy, senses, care technique, elderly persons