Pavilion Health Today
Supporting healthcare professionals to deliver the best patient care

Is there a place for therapeutic lying in dementia care?

Therapeutic lying to dementia patients may be advantageous when attempting to avoid patient harm or distress. 

More than 850,000 people live with dementia in the UK. This statistic, in conjunction with dementia’s detrimental impact on cognition, demonstrates it to be a prominent and important topic.1 The cognitive impairment accompanying dementia may result in patients holding beliefs that fail to reflect reality, causing individuals to have a distorted understanding of the world around them.2 These patients may believe that deceased parents or spouses are still alive, or that other aspects of their lives are as they once were. For example, a patient in a care environment may not recognise their surroundings and may wish to return home


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