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Month: September 2010

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Robotic Seal Helps Dementia Patients

Soothing dementia patients can often be a difficult task. Pet therapy has been proven to reduce anxiety and other symptoms in dementia patients. Many nursing homes utilize animals because they are so effective with patients, whether or not they have dementia. Birds, dogs, rabbits, and sometimes cats bring comfort to agitated patients. Animals allow many patients nationwide to engage with the world and with each other. Japanese researchers have developed Paro, a therapy robot designed to look like a baby harp seal, expanding on the concept of pet therapy. Paro is not your ordinary robot. The seal comes equipped with various sensors and other features that allow him to act like a real animal. Paro coos and cuddles like a real animal, offering comfort to senior dementia patients and young children alike. When you pet Paro, it feels you are stroking a real warm, soft animal. Paro responds to its name and different patterns of stroking, imitating a real baby harp seal. Paro is powered by a plug that looks like a pacifier.

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