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6 Memory-Stimulating Activities for Older Adults Who Have Dementia

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Memory loss support for someone with dementia must be a daily priority to be effective. The best activities are also ones your aging loved one enjoys, and you can even have fun bonding with your loved one while you offer support. These six activities are effective for delaying memory loss so your loved one stays mentally strong as the condition progresses.

1. Read and Ask Questions

Working memory involves being able to recall things that happened within the last few minutes. One way to boost memory is to read a book with your loved one and ask questions afterward. This process can help you gauge your loved one’s comprehension and encourage pulling from his or her short-term memory to come up with the answers.

Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Edmonton Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.

2. Do a Picture Walk

Old photo albums have a special way of helping seniors with their memory loss. Try pulling out an album you know is filled with memories of positive times for your loved one, then sit down together and talk about each picture. Remember it’s okay if your loved one doesn’t fully remember the people or events you see in the album. Just ask open-ended questions and let your loved one talk about the things he or she recognizes.

3. Put Together a Scrapbook

This activity works in a similar way as doing a picture walk together. However, it also has the added bonus of providing tactile and visual stimulation that brings memories to life. If your loved one is defensive about memory loss, you can describe creating a scrapbook as an art activity. Your loved one may enjoy putting the pictures together so much that he or she gets involved in telling stories about the past.

Aging adults who need help managing mental and physical health issues can benefit from the assistance of highly trained professional caregivers. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elder care families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

4. Bake a Family Recipe

Reminiscence activities are ones that tap into personal history to stimulate long-term memory. Help your loved one make a favorite family recipe. Ideally, it should be fairly simple to keep frustration levels down, and it should help your loved one recall special times, such as family holiday parties. Baking is a multisensory experience, so seeing, smelling, and even touching the ingredients while baking can trigger memory recall.

5. Ask for Help with a Task

You can also stimulate your loved one’s cognitive functioning by asking for help with something he or she did well in the past. For instance, your loved one may be able to help you fold laundry or set the table. Doing things that require completing steps in a certain order can help your loved one retain his or her cognitive abilities.

6. Play an Instrument

Seniors with dementia can learn to play an instrument, provided it’s kept simple. Get your loved one a handheld drum or cymbals, then have him or her tap out rhythms to match different ones you provide. Playing music activates parts of the brain associated with memory, and trying to remember the rhythms builds recall abilities.

Aging in place can present a few challenges for seniors living with dementia. However, they can still live independently at home with the help of professional dementia care. Edmonton families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide their elderly loved ones with mental and social stimulation, timely medication reminders, assistance with meal prep, and much more. Our caregivers are available around the clock to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life. Call us today at (780) 977-7379 to learn about our high-quality in-home dementia care services.