Study on Color Art Therapy Techniques: An Examination of Techniques which Allow Elderly Patients with Severe Dementia and Motor Impairment of the Hands to Express Themselves to the Same Extent as Healthy People

Chitose Ikeda
Toyo University, Japan

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Ingår i: KEER2014. Proceedings of the 5th Kanesi Engineering and Emotion Research; International Conference; Linköping; Sweden; June 11-13

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 100:107, s. 1277-1297

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Publicerad: 2014-06-11

ISBN: 978-91-7519-276-5

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


This research project is focused on art therapy techniques which can be used with patients suffering from severe dementia; and considers the extent of expressive ability patients can achieve through their use. Art therapy is one type of psychotherapy; and consists of a variety of different techniques; such as painting; 3-dimensional expression through sculpture; and miniature garden tending treatments. This type of therapy is used as a treatment for patients’ with mental health problems; and as a way of analyzing patients’ state of mind. There have been reports that use of art therapy can improve concentration in elderly dementia patients; and there is an increasing need for these treatments at geriatric care facilities. However; implementing art therapy for patients with severe dementia or hand motor control impairments is difficult; and these conditions often result in limitations of the patients’ self-expression. In cooperation with the psychotherapy department at The A Hospital; a Japanese facility where elderly dementia patients receive long-term care; this study observed the progress of art therapy treatments in order to clarify their contents; and confirmed the effectiveness of the use of color tile arrangement for expressing abstract themes; a specific method used to enable patients to express their feelings in spite of their dementia. In addition; a comparison of the artworks created by these elderly dementia patients with samples created by healthy people in their 20s showed that this therapy technique enables an equivalent diversity and individuality of expression in both groups.


Psychotherapy; Art Therapy; Dementia; Impairment; Elderly


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