The risk of pain in adults with dementia worsens with advancing age. Painful comorbidities may be underassessed and inadequately treated. Receiving treatment in critical care settings may indicate greater occurrences of pain and complications. Pain may exacerbate behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD), such as agitation. Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies may alleviate pain and BPSD, and continuity of therapy may bolster these therapeutic effects. This review did not reveal an apparent benefit of aromatherapy; however, improvements in BPSD have been shown previously. Massage and human interaction did demonstrate efficacy in reducing BPSD and pain.
Keywords: Agitation; Aromatherapy; CAM; Dementia; Essential oil; Massage; Pain; Touch.
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