Background: Aging societies are a public health concern worldwide. It is critical to develop strategies that harness technology to enhance older adults’ mastery, achievement motives, self-esteem, isolation and depression effectively. Methods: This study aimed to explore the effects of a combination of three-dimensional virtual reality (VR) and hands-on horticultural activities on the psychological well-being of community-dwelling older adults. We used a quasi-experimental design. A total of 62 community-dwelling older adults were recruited and assigned to the experimental (n = 32) and comparison groups (n = 30). The members of the experimental group participated in an 8-week intervention program. Participants of both groups completed before-and-after intervention measurements for outcome variables that included perceived self-esteem, depression, isolation, and mastery and achievement motives, which were analyzed using the generalized estimating equation (GEE). A baseline score of depression was used as an adjustment for the GEE analyses to eliminate the effects of depression on outcomes. Results: After controlling age and gender as confounders, GEE analyses indicated that the experimental group showed significant post-intervention improvements in scores for self-esteem (β = 2.18, P = .005) and mastery (β = 1.23, P = .039), compared to the control group. Conclusions: This study supported a combination of three-dimensional VR and hands-on horticultural activities on community-dwelling older adults to improve self-esteem and mastery. The findings suggest that the future implementation of a similar program would be feasible and beneficial to community-dwelling older adults. Trial registration: The study was posted on www.clinicaltrials.gov (NCT05087654) on 21/10/2021. It was approved by the Institutional Review Board of En Chu Kong Hospital and performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki.
ASJC Scopus subject areas