Maxine Daniel uploaded the inspiring video to her Facebook page with the caption:
“My Christmas gift to my lovely Nana Lilly (who sadly has dementia) was a Baby Annabell doll. Her reaction is a joy to see and melts my heart.”
The emotional video has been viewed over three million times.
Maxine says it’s the best Christmas present she’s ever had.
“My nana, before dementia, was the most loving and caring person you could ever meet. She absolutely loved children.
“Her dementia was progressively getting worse to the point that she had forgotten most family members and her mannerisms became more child like so I thought maybe a doll would help to keep her mind occupied.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome.”
Doll Therapy has been around for well over 20 years. The debate on using dolls in dementia care can still tend to provoke strong opposing responses that sometimes lead to a division between staff in aged care facilities, says Dementia Care Australia.
A recent study, using dolls to alter behaviour in patients with dementia, by researchers at Newcastle University in the UK, revealed that care staff voiced concern initially, saying using dolls was “babyish”, “totally demeaning” and “patronising”.
But afterwards, however, everyone said there were clear benefits and reported a calming effect, reduction in wandering, increased communication and improved speech.