Snoezelen Multisensory Stimulation (SMSS) is a non-pharmacological intervention that provides controlled multisensorial environments to stimulate the primary senses: sight, hearing, smell, touch, taste, proprioceptive and vestibular. Even though the use and potential of SMSS have been widespread in the literature regarding certain target populations (autism, developmental disabilities) and settings (e.g. leisure, therapeutic), its effectiveness in older adults with neurocognitive disorders (e.g. dementia, mild cognitive impairment) and other pathologies (e.g. psychiatric disorders, oncological diseases) is still unclear. Therefore, a systematic review of the literature was conducted to address this issue. The recommendations of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) and of the Cochrane Collaboration were followed. An initial search on PubMed and Scopus databases resulted in 86 articles of which 14 met inclusion criteria and were reviewed in detail. The outcomes showed that most of the studies (n = 13) focused on the effects of SMSS on behaviour and mood in older adults with major cognitive disorders (i.e. dementia). Although there is scarce literature on its impact on cognition, psychophysiological measures (e.g. heart rate, oxygen saturation), daily living functionality and quality of life, this type of intervention seems to contribute to delaying the worsening in severity of the neurocognitive disorders from the mildest to the most severe stages. Likewise, it is legitimate to consider the possibility of potential benefits to older adults with less severe neurocognitive disorders or other pathologies, but more research is needed.

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This post is Copyright: Sónia C. Carvalho,
Fátima S. Martins,
Amélia N. Martins,
Raquel C. Barbosa,
Selene G. Vicente | September 22, 2023
Wiley: Journal of Neuropsychology: Table of Contents