About Validation

What is Validation? Validation is a method for communicating with disoriented older persons1 that is based on employing empathy, showing respect, and developing trust. It was developed by Naomi Feil.

It is a way of being – a basic attitude that can be used in many areas of your life, but is especially useful when interacting with a person who has late onset Alzheimer’s disease.

Its theory is based on principles of humanistic psychology. Very old people who are disoriented are in their last stage of life and they are struggling to die in peace.

The goals of Validation are:

  • Increase verbal and non-verbal communication
  • Increase alertness (eyes open, sit more erect)
  • Improve ability to move and physical well-being
  • Give joy and energy to caregivers
  • Reduce stress to caregivers and disoriented elderly

It uses verbal and non-verbal techniques to improve communication.







1Disoriented older persons are +/- 80 years old and older, have led relatively normal lives but have slowly developed symptoms of dementia in their later years. They do not have a diagnosed illness such as Pick’s, Lewey Bodies, Korsakow or Huntington’s; nor do they have a delirium (symptoms come on very quickly and they are reversible.) Most people have been diagnosed with late onset Alzheimer’s disease.