Meta-analysis of controlled trials testing horticultural therapy for the improvement of cognitive function.
Sci Rep. 2020 Sep 3 ;10(1):14637. Epub 2020 Sep 3. PMID: 32884098
Improving cognitive function is one of the most challenging global issues in cognitive impairment population. Horticultural therapy involves the expertise of a horticultural therapist who establishes a treatment plan for horticultural activities that aim to achieve cognitive changes, and thereby improve health-related quality of life. However, more convincing evidence demonstrating the effect of horticultural therapy on cognitive function is essential. The purpose of this study was to conduct a meta-analysis of controlled trials testing the effect of horticultural therapy on cognitive function and the findings indicate that horticultural therapy programs significantly improved cognitive function. The effect size of the horticultural therapy program was large. Findings of this meta-analysis have important implications for practice and policies. Contemporary healthcare systems should consider horticultural therapy as an important intervention for improving patients' cognitive function. Governments and policy-makers should consider horticultural therapy as an important tool to prevent the decline of cognitive function in cognitive impairment population.