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Dementia guidelines propose the use of nonpharmacological interventions for sleep disturbances for older people. Based on available reviews, it seems most likely that multicomponent interventions have the strongest potential to be effective in improving sleep. However, a detailed description of multicomponent interventions is missing. This systematic review aims to identify, describe, and summarize multicomponent, nonpharmacological interventions to reduce or avoid sleep disturbances in nursing home residents.
This review followed established methodological frameworks for systematic evidence syntheses. A computerized search was conducted in December 2018, using the databases PubMed, CINAHL, Scopus, and Cochrane Library. Two independent reviewers assessed all search results to identify eligible studies and assessed studies’ methodological quality following the Cochrane Risk of Bias methodology for randomized controlled trials and the CASP Appraisal Checklist for controlled trials.
Evaluation studies of any design investigating multicomponent interventions were included, except case studies. Components of included intervention programs were analyzed applying the TIDieR and CReDECI 2 criteria.
A total of 2056 studies were identified through the database search; ten publications about nine interventions met the inclusion criteria and were included in the review. The identified interventions can be summarized assigned to the categories “daytime activities,” “nighttime activities,” “staff training,” and “light exposure.” The approaches showed similarities and differences in procedures, materials, modes of delivery, intervention provider, and intervention period. None of the studies described any intended interactions between components or considered context characteristics in intervention modeling as well as internal and external facilitators or barriers influencing delivery of intervention. We identified positive or mixed positive effects for sleep-related outcomes for the mentioned categories.
The analysis of included interventions demonstrates somehow promising results, although findings are difficult to interpret as interventions were not well described, and the challenges of developing and evaluating complex interventions were not sufficiently acknowledged.
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