The British Journal of Psychiatry
Reality orientation and reminiscence therapy. A controlled cross-over study of elderly confused people.
S Baines, P Saxby, K Ehlert


We compared reality orientation with reminiscence therapy for elderly people in a large residential home, using a controlled cross-over design. Both kinds of therapy group were enjoyed by both staff and residents, and enabled staff to get to know moderately and severely confused residents. The group that received reality orientation followed by reminiscence therapy showed improvement in cognitive and behavioural measures which was not found in the other two groups. It may be important to use reality orientation techniques with confused residents before involving them in a reminiscence group.