Pulsford, D. and Duxbury, J.
Aggressive behaviour by people with dementia in residential care settings: a review.
Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 13
This paper considers the phenomenon of aggressive behaviour perpetrated by people with dementia in residential care settings. Aggressive behaviour is defined in the context of people with dementia, and the problem of ascertaining the incidence of aggression among people with dementia is discussed. The emotional impact of assaults on nurses and other professionals is highlighted, and differing perspectives on the causation of aggressive behaviour are considered. Management strategies derived from the physical/pharmacological; environment management; behaviour modification and person-centred approaches are reviewed. Our conclusion is that while certain strategies appear to reflect good and common sense practice, in particular those deriving from the person-centred approach, there is no clear research evidence for the general effectiveness of any one management approach, and each has drawbacks of a practical or ethical nature. There is also little empirical information about how professional carers actually manage aggressive behaviour in practice.