Therapy dogs may help lower emergency clinicians' stress

 

Therapy dogs may help lower emergency clinicians' stress

 

Academic Emergency Medicine has published new research which shows that medical staff who work evening shifts in the emergency department benefit from reduced stress levels by interacting with a therapy dog for several minutes.

122 participants were involved in the study, in which emergency healthcare providers who were randomised to a five minute interaction with a therapy dog and handler significantly reduced self-reported anxiety. This was in comparison to participants randomised to colouring mandalas for five minutes with coloured pencils.

At the end of their shift, emergency providers had a lower level of salivary cortisol (stress hormone) with either colouring or therapy dog interactions in comparison to controls.

"Many healthcare workers and laypersons believe that dog-assisted support can improve emotional well-being in the healthcare setting, but little hard data exist to scientifically evaluate this belief, especially in emergency care," said lead author Jeffrey A. Kline, MD, of the Indiana University School of Medicine. "We provide novel data to suggest that emergency care providers enjoyed seeing a dog on shift, and received a small benefit in stress reduction after the interaction. We still do not know the extent to which the benefit was from the dog, the handler, or the combination of the two."

 

Jeffrey A. Kline, Kimberly VanRyzin, Jacob C. Davis, Jonathan A. Parra, Maxwell L. Todd, Liza L. Shaw, Benjamin R. Haggard, Michelle A. Fisher, Katherine L. Pettit, Alan M. Beck. Randomized Trial of Therapy Dogs Versus Deliberative Coloring (Art Therapy) to Reduce Stress in Emergency Medicine ProvidersAcademic Emergency Medicine, 2020; DOI: 10.1111/acem.13939

 

How to take control of your dreams

How to take control of your dreams

Lucid dreaming is a phenomenon in which a dreaming
person is aware that they are asleep and dreaming, and are ...

Placebos prove powerful even when people know they're taking one

What are the benefits and uses of stinging nettle?

News

Easton Hamilton, the Director of CMA Members Reach, has put together several articles regarding mental health and COVID-19. We are using this article with their permission as part of our COVID-19 response.

Evan Usler, an assistant professor in the University of Delaware Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, recently answered questions about stuttering and the ongoing research around it.

A study has found that participants' happiness did not decline, or declined much slower, if they repeatedly bestowed gifts on others versus repeatedly receiving those same gifts themselves.

A growing body of research bolsters the case that a happy outlook can have a real impact on your physical wellbeing.

The COMPLEMENTARY MEDICAL ASSOCIATION (The CMA) © 2012. No part of this site may be reproduced without the express permission of The Complementary Medical Association. If used without prior consent a charge of US $1,000 per article, or mini section is paid (US $50 per word (minimum) will be charged. This is not meant to reflect a commercial rate for the content, but as a punitive cost and to reimburse The CMA for legal fees and time costs). Use of the contents, without permission will be taken as consent to bill the illegal user in full.