Gift Ideas For Alzheimers And Dementia
Searching for the perfect gift for a loved one with Alzheimers or dementia does not have to be difficult.
The Alzheimers Association recommends that you first consider what stage of the disease your loved one is in when shopping for a gift for them.
In the early stages of Alzheimers, for instance, a gift may not be very different from what youd give your loved one before their diagnosis. In later stages of the disease, however, sensory stimulating gifts become more important, because the stimulus could bring back some of your loved ones memories.
Here are some gift ideas for Alzheimers by stage that you can use when searching for a gift for a loved one this holiday season:
/ Give A Sense Of Accomplishment
Choosing a gift they will build or make is a great way to give them confidence. For example, you can choose:
- a puzzle
- or a suitable tangram game they will enjoy playing alone or with help.
Choose a photo that is dear to them. Take cardboard, glue, and paint to make a homemade frame with their help. They will enjoy accomplishing something and will be proud of the achievement. Place the freshly framed photo on their nightstand.
Suggested Gifts For Alzheimers Disease And Other Dementia By Need Or Interest
Another thing to consider when choosing a gift for Alzheimers is the type of stimulation you think is most needed. What type of gift will your loved one most enjoy. Does she or he enjoy watching television? We dont recommend television usually, especially given what normal programming is, but we have given a lot of thought to alternative television. We have a great selection of Nature DVDs that are interesting and beautiful to watch but dont involve a plot or even narration. And they are very relaxing for those on both sides of the care-partner relationship. Or try our Video Respite DVDs that actually involve your loved one in conversation, singing, and reminiscence.
Speaking of reminiscing, what could be better than helping mom or dad, grandpa or grandma, or even your spouse who has dementia remember some of those good-old-times. Track down old photographs and create a scrapbook or a memory book. Take walks down memory lane and record those conversations. Not only will you be creating something that you can enjoy with your loved one over and over again, you will be creating a legacy that will be a part of your family for generations to come. Read more about reminiscence therapy and find products for remeiniscing.
Recommended Reading: When A Loved One Has Dementia
Artifact Uprising Softcover Photo Book
Artifact Uprising offers some of the most gorgeous personalized photo prints, books, and keepsakes. Their Softcover Photo Albums are the perfect stocking stuffer or giftdepending on the size of book you chooseto store all their favorite memories. Ranging in size from 5×5 to 10×10, all you need to do is choose your photos, upload them, and place them where you want them. Soon after you will receive your photobook, sure to put a smile on anyones face! These customized memory books are a cost effective and thoughtful option.
Something Warm Comfortable Clothing Fidget Blanket And Weighted Blankets
Comfort, warmth, and calmness are all easily give-able presents that will have great success with your loved ones. Comfortable clothes such as soft cardigans or pyjamas, fluffy socks, and bathrobes are all great for fighting the cold or for relaxation. Some very popular and helpful gift ideas are fidget blankets and weighted blankets. As Alzheimers and other dementias often cause older people to feel anxious, agitated, or have disturbed sleep, these gifts will definitely come in handy.
Weighted blankets or lap pads provide deep pressure therapy as a result, theyre effective in reducing anxiety, calming nerves, providing comfort, and promoting deep sleep. However, you should check with your loved ones doctor before investing in one people with respiratory, circulatory, or temperature regulation problems may not be able to use a weighted blanket or lap pad. The standard advice for weighted blankets is to be about 10% of an older persons body weight.
Fidget blankets or fidget quilts come in a lot of different shapes and sizes, and they provide sensory and tactile stimulation. They are often covered with different sewed-on elements, such as ties, ribbons, buttons, pom poms, zippers, and a variety of textures. These help with focusing attention, exercising hand muscles, and stimulating different senses. You can add some personal touch by sewing your own fidget quilt or by doing so with your family member living with dementia.
Help Hearing The Television A Gift Idea For Everyone Nearby
The TV Stereo Assistive Listening Headphones System is one of the best gifts for elderly people who cant hear the television set. Whether they live in their private home or an assisted living facility, this system will help them easily hear the television and it wont disrupt other people living in the house.
Of course, there is no connection between hearing loss and dementia or memory loss. I just think this is a great gift idea, and wish I wouldve included it in 27 Gifts to Surprise and Delight Your Elderly Parents or Grandparents. Its not as stigmatizing as a hearing aid, and it would make life and entertainment much easier.
What To Look For When Shopping For Gifts For People With Dementia
The best gifts for seniors with dementia are reminiscent of love and family. Yet, it all depends on the persons character traits, lifestyle, and environment. You should choose a gift based on the personality, habits, abilities, and preferences of your loved one. Look for:
Items that are related to old hobbies and interests sports memorabilia, craft items, professional magazines, music discs, etc. Even if your friend or relative can no longer participate in their once favorite activities, such things are certain to bring them pleasure and happy memories
Items that are related to your loved ones home town and childhood a book in their mother tongue, an old photograph of their birth town, a game they used to play with their friends back in the day, etc. People struggling with dementia usually have vivid memories of the past and such gifts will feel very personal and heartwarming
Items that promote creative expression and give a sense of accomplishment puzzles, craft supplies, books, etc.
Items that help your loved one maintain an independent life calendar clocks, picture phones, automatic medication dispensers, etc.
Items that can make your loved ones life easier automatic nightlights, comfortable clothes and shoes, gift cards for services and meals, etc.
Also Check: Cna Care For Alzheimer Patients
Soft Blanket A Comforting Gift For People With Dementia
A Luxury Fleece Bed Throw Blanket is a comfortable, warm way to pass the time. This is a great gift for people with Alzheimers or dementia because its not too heavy or warm. It is made of Bamboo Viscous derived micro fleece velvet, which is soft and luxurious. Its also machine washable.
The Alzheimers Organization says this is one of the best gifts for people with dementia or memory loss because it offers sensory stimulation. Plus, this blanket just feels comforting and good. When I asked my Twitter followers what they thought the best gifts for people with dementia or memory loss were, the most popular answer was soft, cuddly things. Youre never too old for soft, comfortable wraps and shawls and blankets that felt really good.
Senior Services Of America: Providing Seniors With Dementia Care Love And Engagement Every Day
Senior Services of America specializes in the management and operation of senior housing communities. Since 2000, every day, we have been providing seniors with:
At our memory care communities, we provide many activities and items seniors with all stages of dementia need for care, comfort, and stimulation.
To learn more about the care and comfort we offer, find your nearest community today.
Weighted Calming Mermaid Cushion
Research shows that weighted blankets and lap pads can reduce agitation in people with neurological conditions, promoting a sense of calm and contentment. We love this new take on it, combining the popular mermaid sequin cushions with the weighted lap pad idea. Make your own, check out this how to blog here!
Gifts For Middle Or Late
GPS tracking system: Does your loved one become disoriented easily or wander? If you want to invest in something that could help locate your loved one if he or she gets lost, consider a GPS tracking system.
There are several options available, with varying costs. Most have an initial charge for the equipment and set-up and then an ongoing monthly fee for the service. You can set up a system to alert you if he or she leaves a pre-determined boundary area, as well as provide continual monitoring that you can access from your phone or computer screen.
Medical identification bracelet: An attractive medical identification bracelet can provide a little peace of mind for you and your loved one. Bracelets often have the option of listing the individual’s name, medical conditions, contact information and more. As with the GPS tracking system, you may want to consider purchasing a bracelet if your loved one tends to wander or become restless.
Costume jewelry: Costume jewelry may be the perfect gift for your loved one who enjoys fashion and color. If there are beads in the jewelry, be sure they are securely attached so they don’t present a choking hazard.
Recommended Reading: What Is The 7th Stage Of Alzheimer’s
Tips And Gift Ideas To Brighten Your Holiday Gift Giving
Holiday time with those living with Alzheimers/Dementia does not need to be stressful. In fact, some of the moments can be very special as people take time to listen and pay special attention to your loved one. Savor those moments, and know that as long as you show patience and love, you and your loved one will enjoy this holiday as much as ever!If the person is in the early stages of Alzheimers, relatives and friends might not notice any changes. But the person with dementia may have trouble following conversation or tend to repeat him or herself. Family can help with communication by being patient, not interrupting orcorrecting, and giving the person time to finish his or her thoughts.
If the person is in the middle or late stages of Alzheimers, there may be significant changes in cognitive abilities since the last time an out-of-town friend or relative has visited. These changes can be hard toaccept. Make sure visitors understand that changes in behavior and memory are caused by the disease and not the person.
Understand Their Daily Challenges
Understanding the needs of your loved ones and their daily challenges will help you support them to make their life easier and more enjoyable. These challenges differ depending on the severity of the condition, so be sure to consider their individual circumstances.
For example, if they live independently, you could help them stay connected and safe with useful gadgets like voice-control speakers, adapted telephones or personal monitoring systems. Additionally, you could consider easy-to-read clocks and calendars that help them get through their days smoothly.
Recommended Reading: Do People With Alzheimer’s Dream
Color Your Mind: Color Your Mind: A Coloring Book For Those With Alzheimer’s And The People Who Love Them
Journalist Maria Shriver has been an advocate for Alzheimer’s awareness after her father battled the disease. She created an adult coloring book to offer an outlet for those suffering from memory loss to channel their creativity and self-expression. Its the perfect gift or stocking stuffer, as it will provide hours of brain-stimulating activity while letting them channel their creativity. Add a pack of pens or markers to complete the gift.
Memory games are scientifically proven to ward off dementia. We love the concept of this personalized memory game courtesy of Paper Culture. Unlike other concentration games, when your loved one flips over one of these triple thick, 100% recycled paper cards, they will be delighted to find photos of all their favorite people on one side and patterns of your choice on the other. They are incredibly easy to create, with the brands free online tools and filters. Each game comes with 16 pairs of game pieces in the shape of circles as well as a fun keepsake circular tube to store them in.
A Book In Their Mother Tongue Or Childhood Language
When I did an internship with the Alzheimers Society, I learned that some people with dementia revert to their original language or mother tongue. If they learned English as a second language, they sometimes forget how to speak it as the dementia progresses, and they speak the language they learned as a baby.
If your loved one has reverted to her original German, Italian, Mandarin, etc why not give her the gift of a book in her childhood language? It might be a lovely way to comfort her by bringing her warm memories of her childhood.
/ Provide Sensory Experience
At a certain stage of the disease, sensory gifts will be most useful for dementia patients. Helping them to have memories through smells, for example, is a great idea. So you can offer:
- a scented candle
- or their favorite fragrance to always have that smell on them.
Allowing them to listen to the music they love will have a very soothing effect. Create their best playlist on Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube Music, or Deezer and share it with them. Be careful, respect the original versions because they may not recognize the remastered ones. Smile effect guaranteed!
/ Keep Your Loved One Active
Its better to choose a gift that can help to pass the time, as inactivity can increase restlessness and anxiety. Physical, manual, or brain activities are crucial to keep them busy and slow the progression of the disease. It is recommended to do about 20 minutes of activity per day, but beware of excess, which will cause fatigue and stress.
You can opt for:
- a puzzle
- or why not an audiobook if the person has difficulty reading.
Make a small coloring book by looking for suitable models: the drawings must be rough because coloring very small areas may be too difficult. You can also indicate the color to put on each area by a number. Do not propose more than 4 colors .
For inspiration, look here at the type of coloring suitable for a person with Alzheimers disease at a moderate stage.
Also Check: Does Sugar Make Dementia Worse
/ Maintain Social Relationships
Having an active social life can reduce stress and brighten the day. The best gift for your loved one with dementia will of course remain your faithful and warm presence by their side. Never forget it despite appearances!
- take your loved one to an exhibition
- or attend a show
If the disease is too advanced, you can offer to reread their favorite book. To help them find the thread of the story, take some brief notes on key events and characters during the reading. Read these notes together as soon as you resume reading day after day.
You can offer them a VOUCHER FOR to go for a walk by your side. So they will be able to choose when they want to use the voucher Do not hesitate to make this moment fun and enjoyable by deciding to count your steps, walk like a soldier or look for objects of a certain color. Even if your loved one has lost the sense of direction, a little walk will do them a lot of good!
Whats A Good Gift For Someone With Dementia
Gift-giving can sometimes be tricky if you have a loved one who lives with dementia or Alzheimers disease. But there is an abundance of gifts out there for you to choose from. There are gifts to help make life easier. Gifts to indulge to inspire. Gifts to help unwind. And so many more. Start here with these 8 great gift ideas for someone with dementia.
Recommended Reading: Do Saunas Help Prevent Alzheimer’s
Snug Safety Free Daily Check
Looking for a unique gift idea for a senior or elderly person who lives alone? Here is a great alternative to expensive medical alert systems.
Snug is a free and friendly check in service for people living alone. It works via an app on a mobile phone and alerts a seniors emergency contacts if they dont check in by their assigned time.
There are free and paid subscription plans available. The free plan sends text messages to the emergency contacts while the paid Dispatch plan takes additional steps including phone calls to make sure the person is safe. If they cant reach anyone, they will request a Wellness Check to the cell phones last location.
The Dispatch Plan is $9.99 per month but Graying With Grace readers can save 15% by using my discount code GWG15.
A Shiatsu Pillow Massager For Tired Neck And Back Muscles
The Zyllion Shiatsu Pillow Massager With Heat is a useful gift for anyone who gets tired, sore and achy! People with memory loss, Alzheimers or dementia also have typical aches and pains. This gift idea will relax body and brain this deep-kneading shiatsu massager has nodes to help relax and relieve tightness.
The heating function soothes aching muscles, and the ergonomic design is perfect to use on lower- and upper-back, neck, abdomen, calf, and thigh areas. The adjustable strap secures the cushion to a favorite chair, and the massager is equipped with an Overheat Protection Device and programmed with 20-minute Auto Shut-Off to ensure safety for people who may forget to turn it off.
Recommended Reading: When Was Alzheimer’s First Identified