Helpful Engaging Activities That Your Loved One With Dementia. This article was written by the Residential Aged Care Services Melbourne Australia and they can be reached at Residential Aged Care Services Melbourne – VIC #1 Nursing Homes (homestyleagedcare.com.au)
There are plenty of activities that you can do with your loved ones despite their dementia. To help you, we will enlist twelve that are hassle-free and very easy. Living with a loved one with Dementia is a unique life experience that will allow you to show unconditional love. It will require you to rethink how you do things. It will invite you to be patient. To help you, please read on and learn about the many activities that you can have your loved one engage in. Know that however disheartening your situation may be, there is always a way to show and express your love.
The Importance of Engaging Dementia Patients in Daily Activities
Maintaining a daily routine is healthy for seniors. All the more with ones suffering from dementia. A routine is helpful as it will allow your loved one to have a structured, familiar, and calm day. The following are its additional benefits:
1. Improved cognitive function – engaging in structured activities will allow their minds to stay fresh and ready for new experiences. The continued social bond will help in maintaining their peace and calm.
2. Improved focus – a person with dementia will greatly benefit from doing something where focus and attention are required. The feeling of structure will significantly reduce any amount of stress that they are experiencing.
3. Improved sense of well-being – structured hassle-free activities will help your loved one feel productive. When one feels productive, one’s sense of overall well-being is significantly boosted.
Factors to Consider When Choosing an Activity for Your Loved One with Dementia
Not all activities will be compatible with your loved one. It will greatly vary depending on your loved one’s health, abilities, and interests. Keep the following in mind when looking for an engaging activity for your loved one:
1. Timing is everything.
You should highly consider the scheduling of your preferred activity. Pick a time when your loved one is relaxed, calm, and not occupied with other activities. Never schedule an activity on times when your loved one is anxious or sad. Experts from Homestyle Aged Care, an Aged Care home in Geelong, advise monitoring your loved one’s mood on a daily basis to see the best times of the day to have them engaged in stress-free activities.
2. Prioritize abilities.
Always check with your loved one’s doctor. Always ensure that any activity is safe for them to engage with even before considering one. Always start small and never feel pressured when it comes to progress. Small progress is still progress.
12 Engaging Daily Activities that Your Loved Ones With Dementia Can Do
Consider the following activities depending on your loved one’s abilities, health, and interests:
1. Chair Exercise – this is fantastic because it can be done without having to leave a room. Do this while playing music that your loved one enjoys. A 20-minute daily chair exercise will be fantastic.
2. Walking – walking is single-handedly the best exercise for all, even for persons with Dementia. Studies show that walking a few times on a weekly basis can significantly alter the trajectory of any disease.
3. Gardening – the change of scene and fulfilling feeling of growing and tending to a plant is something that your loved one will enjoy.
1. Puzzles – jigsaw puzzles are fun because they can easily stimulate the brain. The activity is also calming. Your loved one can do this alone or with you and others. Doing puzzles together promotes emotional connection.
2. Board games – fun board games like Ludo and Snakes and Ladders will be highly enjoyable to your loved one. Choose ones that are not complicated. If your loved one can still play Scrabble then you should also give it a try.
3. Computer games – studies show that brain-training computer games can boost a senior’s brain processing speed by 29%. If your loved one can still use the computer or a smartphone, you should give this one a try.
1. Listen to music – Studies show that listening to music can reduce anxiety and agitation. Persons in different stages of the disease can all enjoy listening to music and derive benefits from it. Favorite songs and songs from one’s childhood produce the best therapeutic effects.
2. PlayDoh – this is a highly relaxing and fun activity. It engages the brain because it stimulates numerous senses.
3. Museum Visits – a break from daily routines is always welcome every now and then. Museum visits are perfect because your loved one will also get to socialize with you and others apart from being introduced to new experiences.
1. Scheduled eating and sleeping – a structured sleep and eating schedule is highly ideal for people with Dementia. The sense of familiarity makes them feel calm and at ease. It lessens their sense of anxiety.
2. Pet care – having your loved one care for a pet is highly therapeutic. Apart from the added physical activity, your loved one’s emotional well-being will also improve. Having a pet is effective in avoiding the risk of depression in seniors.
3. Light responsibilities – it’s best if you can still give light responsibilities to your loved one. If they still have the ability for it, you should always go out of your way to make them feel needed and important in your life. Give them light daily chores such as sorting or folding clothes.