Authors: Benigas JE, Bourgeois M
Title: Using Spaced Retrieval With External Aids to Improve Use of Compensatory Strategies During Eating for Persons With Dementia
Source: American Journal of Speech Language Pathology 2016 25(3): 321-334
Year: 2016
Research Design: Single Case Design

Purpose: This study was designed to determine whether spaced retrieval (SR), when paired with an external memory aid, is an effective technique to teach persons with dementia to use compensatory swallowing strategies. A secondary purpose was to learn whether speech-language pathologists naive to the study aims would judge posttraining sessions as improved, or safer, in comparison to baseline sessions, thereby validating the changes in behavior due to SR training to use external aids during meals. Method: A multiple baseline design across behaviors was used to evaluate the effects of teaching compensatory swallowing behaviors (i.e., chin tuck, alternation of liquids and solids, lingual/finger sweep) to 5 nursing home residents diagnosed with dementia and coexisting dysphagia. Results: SR training with the use of a visual aid was functionally related to improvements in 2–3 compensatory swallowing behaviors for each of the 5 participants. Conclusions: Study outcomes paired with social validation ratings demonstrated that persons with dementia could learn compensatory swallowing behaviors for perceived safety during intake. Because participants were eating in a quiet and controlled environment, generalization to the typical dining environment remains unknown, and further research is needed to investigate the long-term impact of this training protocol.

Access: Paywall