Thursday, September 29, 2022
HomePatientThings To Do For Dementia Patients

Things To Do For Dementia Patients

Games Puzzles And Around The Home Activities For Dementia Patients

Purposeful activities for dementia: Alzheimer’s Australia VIC
  • Listen to music. A universally soothing activity, listening to music from their past will help them remember the good times associated with the music. Not sure how music ties into memory? Just think do you remember how you learned the alphabet? 15 Best Activities for Alzheimers Patients at Home, By Your Side Home Care Twitter:
  • Sort and match up nuts and bolts, or tighten screws. Was your loved one the fixer, the handyman, or the go-to guy? Maybe hed like to sort through and match up nuts and bolts, or tighten screws into pieces of wood. Perhaps hed like to connect smaller PVC pipes together. There are also activity boards with lots of to do things attached that you can purchase. – Esther Heerema, MSW, Creative Activities Ideas for People with Dementia, Verywell Health Twitter:
  • Create a memory bag. Fill the bag with items reminiscent of their late teens/early twenties. Scented products work well for this, as scents are strongly tied to memory. Try including soap, perfumes and aftershave, or holiday scents like gingerbread, pine and peppermint. Activities for Dementia Patients, A Place for Mom Twitter:
  • Help with clean-up around the home. Instead of automatically tidying up the home, encourage dementia patients to assist with the clean-up. Doing so may increase their sense of purpose. 10 Activities for People Living with Dementia or Alzheimers Disease, Compassionate Care
  • Bake Their Favorite Dish Or Dessert

    People with dementia commonly suffer from depression because they dont know what is going on around them, even forgetting that their loved ones are still there for them. Cooking or baking together can be one of the most therapeutic things to do together, plus allow you to make some old favorite recipes that theyll really enjoy. Or you can bake their favorite dessert or treat that they can smell and taste and have those memories rush back.

    Is Coloring Good For Dementia Patients

    Coloring is a good activity for dementia patients since it shows positive outcomes, most notably a decrease in anxiety and agitation. The therapeutic value of activities like coloring partly comes from the persons need to concentrate and in participating so that they essentially stop thinking about their troubles while coloring.

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    Doing Their Old Occupation

    I went to a symposium on Dementia and one of the speakers told us how they had set up an office at the adult memory care center so the patient could go to work. What a great idea!

    Come tax time, I have my Mom check over my tax documents before I take them into the accountant .

    Being able to do something well is fun for anyone and since they live in the past sometimes their work is easier to do than all the fun activities we can come up with! Their long term memories kick in and they feel confident again.

    Playing Or Listening To Music

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    Music is a great way to connect with someone who has dementia. It can evoke memories and feelings and provide a sense of comfort. Many studies support the use of music as therapy for those with dementia.

    There are two main ways to use music in this situation: playing or listening. If youre playing music, try to find popular songs during your loved ones formative years. If theyre older, you can play music from their era or even current tunes that remind them of things like the first time they heard a favorite song on the radio. Try putting a small instrument in their hands, maybe one they have played.

    You can also play music via the radio, a smartphone, or a CD player. Spotify and Youtube have endless amounts of music from all genres and time periods available for free. Music can be one of the most beneficial and effective forms of therapy for dementia patients, plus its just fun to enjoy something together.

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    Repetitive Speech Or Actions

    People with dementia will often repeat a word, statement, question, or activity over and over. While this type of behavior is usually harmless for the person with dementia, it can be annoying and stressful to caregivers. Sometimes the behavior is triggered by anxiety, boredom, fear, or environmental factors.

    • Provide plenty of reassurance and comfort, both in words and in touch.
    • Try distracting with a snack or activity.
    • Avoid reminding them that they just asked the same question. Try ignoring the behavior or question, and instead try refocusing the person into an activity such as singing or âhelpingâ you with a chore.
    • Donât discuss plans with a confused person until immediately prior to an event.
    • You may want to try placing a sign on the kitchen table, such as, âDinner is at 6:30â or âLois comes home at 5:00â to remove anxiety and uncertainty about anticipated events.
    • Learn to recognize certain behaviors. An agitated state or pulling at clothing, for example, could indicate a need to use the bathroom.

    Activities That Promote Healthy Eating

    • Cook together ask the person about their favorite meal and work together to make it. Or look up healthy cooking videos online and try to make them yourselves.
    • Plant vegetables together in the garden or in pots.
    • Have a picnic together bring healthy food options the person likes. Bring a portable or camping chair if the person has trouble sitting on the ground.

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    Daily Activities Or Household Chores

    Dementia patients want to feel a sense of independence. We all do. While it can be tempting to step in and take over all home care and household chores, you should encourage your loved one to complete these safe activities:

    • Fold laundry: Folding laundry is a nearly failure-free activity that can give a dementia patient a sense of accomplishment .

    • Untie or tie knots: If the individual has shoes with laces, tying or untying knots can help improve mobility in their hands.

    • Loading the dishwasher: If dishes need to be washed, this could be a task they can do on their own .

    Why Is It Important To Keep Dementia Patients Engaged In Daily Activities

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    A daily routine with healthy activities is important for seniors of any age and especially vital for dementia patients. As dementia worsens over time, the person will find it more difficult to focus and struggle to learn new things. Having a routine in place early on helps give them structure that they find familiar. Additional benefits of having a routine that incorporates engaging activities for a loved one with dementia include:

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    Perseverance And Flexibility Is Key

    If your loved one isnt interested in the activity or seems resistant, just take a break and try again later. You could also try a different activity or ask your loved one how you could make this one more enjoyable for them. You should also focus on the process of the activity, not the results what matters most is that your loved one enjoys the time and feels useful.

    At SuperCarers, we connect families with compassionate carers in their local area, and help them manage their home care themselves. Feel free to give us a call on 020 8629 1030 for more information.

    You may also like our article about brain games for the elderly.

    If youd like to find out more about dementia, its symptoms and private care solutions available, download our guide to living with dementia for free.

    What Is Alzheimer’s Disease

    Alzheimer’s Disease is a chronic and progressive condition characterized by the decline of cognitive functions such as reasoning, remembering and planning. It affects people in different ways no two individuals will experience exactly the same progression of the disease. A person’s personality, health and social situation are all important factors that influence the impact of dementia.

    Related: What is dementia? Alzheimer’s Disease vs Dementia

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    Tips For Caregivers: Taking Care Of Yourself

    Being a caregiver can be extremely rewarding, but it can also be overwhelming. Caring for a person with Alzheimer’s or a related dementia takes time and effort. It can feel lonely and frustrating. You might even feel angry, which could be a sign you are trying to take on too much. It is important to find time to take care of yourself. Here are some tips that may offer some relief:

    • Ask for help when you need it. This could mean asking family members and friends to help or reaching out to for additional care needs.
    • Eat nutritious foods, which can help keep you healthy and active for longer.
    • Join a caregiver’s support group online or in person. Meeting other caregivers will give you a chance to share stories and ideas and can help keep you from feeling isolated.
    • Take breaks each day. Try making a cup of tea or calling a friend.
    • Spend time with friends and keep up with hobbies.
    • Get exercise as often as you can. Try doing yoga or going for a walk.
    • Try practicing meditation. Research suggests that practicing meditation may reduce blood pressure, anxiety and depression, and insomnia.
    • Consider seeking help from mental health professionals to help you cope with stress and anxiety. Talk with your doctor about finding treatment.

    Sensory Activities For People With Dementia

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  • Stop and smell the roses Studies suggest smells trigger more vivid emotional memories than images, according to Harvard scientists. This is because scents are processed by the hippocampus and the amygdala, the same parts of our brains that control memories. A familiar smell like flowers from a childhood garden or freshly baked Christmas cookies can elicit positive memories and emotions. Conversely, its important to avoid smells that cause anxiety. Diesel fuel and gunpowder are common PTSD triggers for older veterans.
  • Explore familiar objectsTactile exploration can bring up memories that may not be accessible through pictures or verbal prompting. Even if your loved one doesnt remember their first car or their wedding, the feeling of weighty keys or hand-embroidered pearls could encourage reminiscence.
  • Have a taste of historyLike smells, tastes can elicit emotions and memories. Your moms famous chocolate cake could bring back birthdays a sip of instant coffee could recall quiet, early mornings at home.
  • Feel diverse texturesUnique textures provide sensory stimulation, as well as memory cues. If your aging family member is a pet lover, consider the soft fur of an animal. If they liked to garden, suggest touching damp soil or leaves. Textures can also be used for fulfilling activities try making a bag of fabrics or blocks to be be sorted by touch.
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    Meaningful Activities For Dementia Patients: 15 Ways To Keep Your Loved One Engaged

    Are you searching for enjoyable, stimulating activities for your loved one who is suffering from dementia?

    You want to do all you can to enhance their quality of life, bring them joy, and reduce harmful behaviors but where do you start?

    If youre looking for ways to engage your loved one with dementia, youre in the right place.

    Here, we will discuss a wide variety of therapeutic activities for dementia patients, so you can choose the activities that best meet your loved one’s needs.

    Creative Activities For Dementia Patients

    #1: Paint

    Creating art provides the opportunity for individual expression and may improve memory.

    If you’re worried that allowing a dementia patient to paint may be messy, you may be right. Try using butcher paper, so your loved one doesn’t have to worry about making a mess and you dont have to worry about clean-up.

    #2: Make a Memory Box

    Assemble a box of items that are special to your loved one.

    You can include things like:

    • Special mementos

    • Items that remind the patient of past professions, such as:

    • Paperclips, a calculator, and a notepad for a secretary or

    • Bolts, sandpaper, and a piece of PVC pipe for a handyman and

  • Items related to favorite hobbies

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    Staff Suggested Activities For Those With Dementia

    Because dementia inhibits a persons ability to choose and follow through on activities on their own, the Primrose day club staff has compiled the following activity suggestions for caregivers:

    • Begin with activities that your loved one has enjoyed in the past
    • Watch for boredom from activities that are too simple, or for frustration if too difficult
    • Keep it short, simple, with few instructions
    • Be patient! And be aware of your facial expressions such as raised eyebrows
    • Keep activities routine, organized, and structured
    • Limit activities to 45 minutes or less

    Fidget Toys Like Bubble Poppers

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    Fidget toys are a relatively new thing, mainly among children and pre-teens. But fidget toys can also be a great tool for memory care facilities to use for dexterity therapy. The fidget toys called pop-its are like plastic bubble wrap that require users to push a small round bubble in varying patterns and colors. It is fun and intended to alleviate anxiety in young children and can be just as beneficial for elderly folks with anxiety.

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    Cooking Household Tasks And Gardening

    You can keep or start cooking, as long as it is safe for you. If it becomes difficult, there are some small changes that can make things easier.

    For example, you can:

    • ask someone to help you in the kitchen
    • try recipes that have fewer steps or ingredients
    • use pre-prepared ingredients such as ready-made
    • sauces or chopped vegetables.

    Many jobs around the home also provide a good form of gentle exercise and can help you to keep physically active. These include:

    • doing housework for example, washing up, folding clothes or dusting
    • gardening for example, gently weeding the garden, maintaining houseplants, or growing herbs or flowers in window boxes.

    You can ask someone to do these tasks with you if this makes them more enjoyable or easier.

    Tip: It can be helpful to put out the things you need before starting a task so that you have a visual prompt for example, tools for gardening or ingredients for cooking.

    Talk With A Senior Living Advisor

    Our advisors help 300,000 families each year find the right senior care for their loved ones.

  • Fold laundryLaundry is a familiar activity for most seniors, especially women. Soft fabrics and a repeated motion can be calming. Plus, classic detergent smells may elicit comforting memories. Start with easy items like hand towels and T-shirts. Avoid items like fitted sheets and buttoned shirts that could be challenging.
  • Simulate handy tasksIf your aging relative always loved to tinker, suggest a project with visible results. Painting wooden boards and fitting together PVC pipes are good activities for seniors with high motor function. Wooden or plastic play tools provide a similar experience for people with more advanced dementia.
  • Untie knotsTie loose knots along a thick rope. The elderly person may enjoy untying them, though avoid making the knots too tight or using a rough rope.
  • Do a puzzlePick a puzzle with large, tactile pieces. Wooden color or shape puzzles help with matching and are fail-safe.
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    Daily Tasks To Treat The Physical Impairments Of Dementia

    So much of dementia is taking away cognitive function in the brain, which makes for poor memory and day-to-day tasks that many of us take for granted.

    Things like brushing your teeth, getting dressed, or even turning a doorknob can become arduous if not impossible for elderly dementia patients. Luckily, there are some ways to incorporate physical therapy into fun games or puzzles that can be enjoyed while benefiting the patient.

    The Timing Must Be Right

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    In order to ensure success in activities for dementia patients, the timing has to be just right.

    People suffering from dementia can be unpredictable, so be prepared to be flexible and patient.

    Pay attention to times when the person seems:

    • Happy

    • Anxious or

    • Irritable

    Make sure that your loved one isnt preoccupied, so they can fully focus on the activity. If the time is not right, switch gears and try a less-stressful activity.

    When the timing is right, pick a clutter-free area away from noise and distractions.

    As you are planning activities for dementia patients, it can also help to consider the time of day. For instance, choose calm and relaxing activities, like listening to music, around bedtime.

    And remember, an activity that was a great success one day may not receive the same welcome the next.

    The key is to focus on the needs of your loved one and be ready to move on to a new activity, if necessary.

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    Household Chores / Everyday Activities

    You might assume that household chores are tedious, but for dementia patients, they are rewarding. They help the senior gain a sense of accomplishment and independence. In fact, the person may get agitated if you leave them alone to take care or essential household tasks such as laundry.

    If so, try finding ways for the dementia patient to help with the following:

    • Folding laundry
    • Playing with paperclips
    • Shuffling and arranging a deck of cards

    The activities above might not always be performed up to your standard by the dementia patient, but he/she will enjoy feeling helpful.

    Where Does Your Loved One Live

    Mom is in middle stages of dementia, with a bunch of memory loss, but still able to do limited activities.

    Some of these will be good for loved ones being cared for at home like Mom is, some will work for a dementia patient staying at assisted living or even in memory care.

    The key is to find at least a few meaningful activities that YOUR loved one Alzheimer’s disease or dementia likes doing!

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