6 Helpful Activities For Dementia Patients

 The Importance Of Keeping Dementia Patients Active

It is usual for someone with a dementia diagnosis to withdraw from excessively stimulating social activities and events. People with dementia try to mask their symptoms and make up for interventions that make sense for them. It is crucial to find out how to communicate and connect with those with dementia as it progresses so that you can cope with it in the best way possible.

Keeping dementia patients regularly involved in day-to-day activities and cognitively demanding tasks is beneficial for both body and mind, and can also delay the progression of the disease in some cases. Staying involved and attentive can be of great help for a person who has dementia. If you want to help your loved one maintain their body as active as possible, then pay attention to the next basic guideline on helpful activities for dementia patients.

The Difference Between Alzheimer’s And Dementia

Dementia, as many people might think, is not the same as Alzheimer's disease. Dementia is an overarching concept used to describe symptoms that affect memory, everyday activity output, and communication skills. The most prevailing form of dementia is Alzheimer's disease. In the case of Alzheimer's disease, it gets worse over time and affects memory, vocabulary, and perception. Nonetheless, younger people can also develop dementia or Alzheimer's disease; the risk simply increases as you age. While symptoms of both conditions can overlap, it is essential to differentiate them in management and treatment.

The easiest way of differentiating dementia from Alzheimer’s is that dementia is a syndrome, not a disease. A syndrome is a cluster of symptoms with no precise diagnosis; therefore, dementia is a group of symptoms that affect cognitive mental tasks such as memory and reasoning. Dementia is a term used to describe Alzheimer's disease and other illnesses. It may occur because of several disorders, of which Alzheimer's disease is the most common.

Put simply, dementia is the term applied to a group of symptoms that have a detrimental effect on memory. Still, Alzheimer's is a chronic brain disorder that steadily causes memory and cognitive decline. The exact cause is uncertain, and there is no cure.

Tips For Managing Someone With Dementia

People are always looking for things to lower the risk of having dementia. All common strategies include changing diets, exercising, meditating, and consuming more vegetables. Today, more ideas and approaches are emerging that can help avoid dementia in all its manifestations.

But what about a person who’s already diagnosed with dementia? How can you help your loved one? Family members and caregivers need to understand what behaviors can help benefit someone diagnosed with the disease.

A carer's role should be all-inclusive and complex, and it’s always changing; it can be both enriching and exhausting. Carers or family members need to build a support system for themselves when helping their loved ones deal with dementia. If you’re in the situation of helping your loved one cope with dementia and have no clue where to start, take a look at the next tips of helpful activities for dementia patients.

Avoid Focusing On What They Cannot Do

Instead of mentioning all the things the person can no longer do, concentrate on solutions that mitigate what might have been lost. For example, if your loved one can't drive, sign up together for a ride-sharing service. You can also offer to drive them to events or appointments in a compassionate, sincere, and not selfish manner.

Avoid Leaving Them Alone In Big Gatherings

Encourage your loved one to do what they instinctively find fun and straightforward. This guiding principle helps to alleviate tension. Socialization has many advantages for adults. However, people with dementia in large groups or new situations may become nervous and fearful. On the other hand, consider selecting smaller group environments for social interaction. Dinners at home with a handful of friends, rather than bigger parties at a restaurant, are more accommodating for someone who is experiencing dementia.

 Train Other Members Of Their Inner Circle To Support Them

It's of the utmost importance that the people surrounding the patient with dementia— friends and family— can appreciate and stay eager to learn how to be better carers. The primary caregiver needs to build a network or group of friends and family that can provide support to help keep the loved one involved. Let your loved one know that there will always be a critical presence in the family and society ready to help.

 6 Activities For Dementia Patients

Painting Or Drawing

This activity can be enjoyable and soothing, but watch out for your loved one who may get frustrated about not being 'as nice' as they used to be at something. If this happens, you must participate and provide a positive comment about themselves and help derail the negative vibes. Painting and drawing are ways of comfortably and creatively voicing the emotions. Encourage the use on broad surfaces of bold, vibrant colors. Butcher paper rolls allow your loved one to build something without facing the burden of specified spaces.

 Help Them Create Collages Of Their Interests

Cut out magazine photos, or print out old advertisements. Choose topics that suit the desires of your loved one, like food, music, or fashion. Another suggestion is to scan and print old photographs of the family. Let your family member with dementia organize and rearrange the elements to create photos or scrapbook pages.

Animal Therapy

If your loved one is an animal enthusiast but does not have a pet, animal therapy might be a perfect way to stimulate them. Pets have been shown to alleviate stress and depression, as well as anxiety symptoms. Animal therapy is a great sensory experience for your loved one, and there are many other advantages too. Pet therapy also helps reduce blood pressure and heart rate, lower the stress hormone cortisol, and improve feel-good hormone levels, such as serotonin. You can invite a well-behaved pet that any of your friends or family might have, take your loved one to an animal shelter, or look up for any nearby animal therapy organizations.

Physical Activity

For people with dementia, exercise and physical activity will offer loads of benefits. It can help to control their memory, sleep, and avoid evening restlessness and sleeplessness. It may also help keep a good mood and reduce their risk of developing depression. Physical activities can involve walking around their neighborhood or a nearby park, tandem biking —depending on age and health— and even try water aerobics. Health and fitness centers also have seminars and courses specifically tailored for older adults or people living with dementia. Fishing is another excellent option.

Go Outside

Older people with dementia sometimes complain about being lonely or not being able to go out enough, so this can be a great way to ensure this need is met, and varied stimulation is given. Going outside also has the added advantages of adding meaning to their days, such as less stress and agitation prevention. You may want to go shopping together, visit a beautiful spot around town, spend an afternoon together in the park, or visit a botanical garden.

Cooking or Baking

Cooking or baking basic meals can be an excellent way to get your older loved one to do something practical while still providing a delicious treat as a reward. They must be able to do as much as is safe and functional. Depending on their dementia level, they may watch you cook or support you in some steps.

Summarize blog

Having an older loved one suffering from dementia shouldn't be the end of the world, as there are ways to help them live a happy life without you worrying all the time for their future. Hire one of our Right At Home caregivers who are experts on the behavior of dementia patients. If you need help with your loved one's senior care plan, feel free to call us today. We will guide you through this moment of both your and your loved one’s life. Caregiving shouldn't be a burden. You have options, and Right At Home is always ready to provide them to you. Trust in our trained and insured team and let us be your relief in case you might feel everything’s getting too hard to handle.

 

Bruce Gropper
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