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Heart Coherence: A New Tool in the Management of Stress on Professionals and Family Caregivers of Patients with Dementia

C. M. Sarabia-Cobo

Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

For a PDF version of the complete paper, click here.

Abstract

We describe a stress management intervention intended to reduce the damage and stress impact on the heart physiology and function of a group of caregivers (professional and non-professional) who work with patients with dementia. The intervention consisted in applying heart coherence techniques in a population of 72 caregivers of patients with dementia (42 professional and 29 non-professional caregivers) who had high scores in heart stress and burden tests. Six months after the training they were able to generate appropriate patterns of heart coherence, with a statistically significant decrease in their heart overload. We conclude that training in techniques of heart coherence and positive psychology had effective results on the stress management of the participant caregivers. This was a simple, inexpensive technique with lasting results. To our knowledge this is the first research in Spain studying the application of heart coherence techniques to caregivers of people with dementia.