Experiences and Needs of Children Who Have a Parent with Young Onset Dementia: A Meta-ethnographic Review

Courtney Poole, Tom Patterson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Objectives: The aim of the present review was to critically evaluate empirical evidence regarding the needs and experiences of children who have a parent with young onset dementia (YOD). Methods: A systematic search of five databases was carried out and the resulting 16 studies were reviewed using a meta-ethnographic approach. Results: Three main themes arose from the data: ‘Dementia Impact”, which describes how the child experiences the deterioration in their parent and changes to relationships; “Psychological Impact”, comprising the child’s private emotional experiences and the psychological consequences of changes in roles; and “Practical Impact”, detailing the ways in which children adapt their lives in response to parental YOD, and children’s needs for support. Conclusions: These themes synthesize the existing literature and produce a line of argument explaining the experience of children whose parents have YOD. Clinical Implications: Information and policies regarding YOD should take account of the experiences of patients’ children and should include targeted support for children of parents with YOD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)(In-press)
JournalClinical Gerontologist
Early online date4 Jun 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 4 Jun 2020


  • Young onset dementia
  • children
  • needs
  • parents
  • working age dementia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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