Wood products improve the quality of life of elderly people in assisted living

Tokie Anme, Emiko Tanaka, Taeko Watanabe, Kentaro Tokutake, Yukiko Mochizuki, Etsuko Tomisaki, Bailiang Wu, Ryoji Shinohara, Yuka Sugisawa, Chihiro Tada, Tokinao Matsui, Sigeru Asada

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Natural products, such as wooden ones, are attracting increasing interest worldwide because of the growing desire for an ecologically friendly and sustainable society. In particular, the healing effects and safety benefits of wood products have been explored, but few studies have evaluated their effects on the behavior and well-being of older adults in assisted living facilities. Thus, the present study was conducted to explore how wood products affected quality of life in elderly people. Participants were 44 elderly people and 30 health social care professionals in a single assisted living facility. Independent evaluators observed and rated the elderly people's behavior, using the Alzheimer's Disease Related Quality of Life and the Interaction Rating Scale Advanced over one month of using wood products daily. Furthermore, at baseline and one month later, participants completed a "tree drawing task" intended to assess their internal environment. Then, their health status and activities of daily living through regular observation were evaluated by professionals, who also completed a questionnaire evaluating subjective comfort, both before and after using wood products. Our results indicated that regular use of wood products significantly increased social interaction and harmonious relations, activity levels, and mental energy in elderly people. Furthermore, care professionals reported increased positive subjective comfort after using these products. Thus, using wood products on a daily basis appeared to improve the quality life of frail elderly, by stimulating emotional relationships through improved cognitive function.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication13th International Multidisciplinary Scientific Geoconference and EXPO - Geoconference on Nano, Bio and Green - Technologies for a Sustainable Future, SGEM 2013
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes
Event13th International Multidisciplinary Scientific Geoconference and EXPO, SGEM 2013 - Albena, Bulgaria
Duration: 2013 Jun 162013 Jun 22

Publication series

NameInternational Multidisciplinary Scientific GeoConference Surveying Geology and Mining Ecology Management, SGEM
ISSN (Print)1314-2704


Other13th International Multidisciplinary Scientific Geoconference and EXPO, SGEM 2013


  • Education
  • Evaluation
  • Older adult
  • Wood products

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Geology


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