By remaining stimulated and engaged, Alzheimer’s patients can retain their independence and basic skills for longer. Games and activities are great ways for your loved ones suffering from Alzheimer’s to maintain an active mind and accomplish this goal.
Activities are also enriching in that they are fun and enjoyable. Here are 4 kinds of activities that your loved one with Alzheimer’s can do:
Games such as crosswords, word searches, board games, chess, checkers, and puzzles are great for maintaining an active mind and are a lot of fun. Also consider handheld electronic games, as these may be easier for people with limited dexterity or mobility.
People with Alzheimer’s may be more able to remember the distant past than the recent past. Facilitating reminiscence is a good way to help bring up happy memories and enrich the life of your loved one with Alzheimer’s.
Reminiscence can be done privately or in a small group setting. You can provide physical objects in order to stimulate remembering such as photographs, sentimental items, or anything with meaningful to the person that dates back to an earlier time. You may also play some sort of media such as music or a video of a significant historical event.
Bringing your loved one on outings into the community, such as at art galleries or seasonal events, can be a great way to prevent feelings of social exclusion or isolation, which can easily take hold.
Bear in mind that passive activities are probably best rather than those that involve complex choices. Although, depending on one’s capabilities, repetitive tasks such as planting flowers, or sorting things can be manageable and will provide a sense accomplishment.
Your love one may not be able to hold their concentration for very long, so short bursts of activity are probably best.
For people in the later stages of Alzheimer’s, simple tactile sense stimulation can be extremely enjoyable and elicit a strong positive emotional response. It is important to remember that while one with Alzheimer’s develops severely impaired memory and reasoning abilities, their emotional capacity remains intact. Try something simple like a hand massage, back rub, or combing your loved one’s hair.
Visual stimulation can also be quite effective. Bring your loved one outside on a nice day to experience a pleasant view, or position them near a window.
For more advice on what you can do to promote healthy and safe activity for your loved one with Alzheimer’s, contact our team today.
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