Control Beliefs among People with Dementia: A Systematic Review - Nasjonal kompetansetjeneste for aldring og helse

Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders, 2021

Control Beliefs among People with Dementia: A Systematic Review

Introduction: Dementia diseases are still incurable, and in order to assist in living well with the disease, researchers are increasing their attention to the value of control beliefs. Control beliefs are associated with coping and psychological well-being; however, knowledge on how they relate to well-being outcomes in people with dementia is limited. This review aimed to synthesize knowledge about control beliefs in this group to guide future interventions and research.
Method: A systematic search of 6 databases (MEDLINE, CINAHL, PsychINFO, AgeLine, Embase, and the Cochrane Library) with broad search terms related to dementia, control, and coping was conducted. Studies that investigated people with a confirmed dementia diagnosis and that used a questionnaire to measure control beliefs quantitatively were included.
Results: Eighteen studies were identified, examining self-efficacy, personal control/mastery, or locus of control. The studies varied in aim and design, with fair to good methodological quality. However, 10 studies included <50 participants with dementia, leaving findings unreliable due to low power. Participants with dementia in the mild to moderate stages were included, with average age in the seventies. Except for one validation study, the control belief questionnaires had not been validated for people with dementia. Conclusion: There is a lack of knowledge about control beliefs among people with dementia, due to few and low-powered studies. Although we cannot conclude regarding control beliefs, our findings support the feasibility of quantitative research on control beliefs among people with dementia and we recommend that they be included in this type of research.


Ingeborg Halse, Guro Hanevold Bjørkløf, Knut Engedal, Geir Selbæk, Maria Lage Barca

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