10 easy activities for Alzheimer’s and Dementia patients. A good way to help manage some of the difficult symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia is to keep them engaged. You can do this using simple activities. But, coming up with creative activities can be difficult. Keep reading for 10 activities for dementia patients.
A great book recommendation is Creating Moments Of Joy Along The Alzheimer’s Journey.
(Friends: The links in this post are affiliate links. The Aging Authority will be compensated when you make a purchase by clicking through the links.)
10 Activities For Dementia Patients
A good way to help manage some of the difficult symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia is to keep them engaged. You can do this using simple activities. Also, keeping your loved one active during the day is an effective strategy for managing sleep disturbances. Sleep disturbances are often a common symptom of dementia.
However coming up with creative activities for dementia can be puzzling. Therefore, we have compiled the following list of some favorite activities for you to try.
- Folding Laundry- many people with Alzheimer’s disease enjoy the productive and simple act of folding laundry. Try using a laundry sorter like this one to make this a simple and enjoyable task.
- Sorting-Sorting things like silverware, buttons, cards, coins, yarn/fabric or other tactile items is a great activity for people with Alzheimer’s. These stackable sorting bins work wonders!
- Tying knots- type a rope into a series of knots and ask them to help you untie the knots. This activity can be very soothing. Try this knot tying kit.
- Bird Watching- bird watching is an enjoyable and calming activity.
- Picture Cards– These picture cards have pictures of familiar images. Looking at them will engage your loved one in memories and conversations from the past. The back of the cards have starter conversation tips. This can provide hours of joyful entertainment!
- Puzzles- Jigsaw puzzles can be very enjoyable for persons with dementia. As the disease progresses, it is a good idea to replace puzzles with a lot of smaller pieces with those that have less, larger pieces and simple designs.
More Activities For Dementia Patients
- Listening to Music- It is amazing the positive effect music can have on persons with dementia. Often times the music is connected to special memories that are preserved in key brain areas that are unaffected by their disease process. The Simple Music Player is designed for people with Alzheimer’s, dementia or related conditions. It has only three controls:. First, lift the lid to start the music playing. Then push the big button for the next song. Last, close the lid to stop the music.
- Playing with Dolls- many people with Alzheimer’s or dementia love playing with baby dolls. Also if you are unable to arrange visits with animals something life like stuffed animals can serve as a substitute.
- Prepping Meals- A great and also helpful activity is to ask your loved one to help you prepare meals by giving them easy tasks such as washing vegetables for example. Be sure to use color coded cutting boards for safety from contamination.
- Writing Cards/Letters- In the earlier stages of Alzheimer’s your loved one may still be able to write letters and greeting cards. A client of mine once wrote out birthday and other holidays cards for several years to come for his children and grandchildren. Then, even when he was no longer able to, his caregiver could mail out these cards to continue the tradition for him.
- Looking at photo albums- Many older people have stacks of photo albums and even memory books from when their children were young. Looking through them and reminiscing is a fun and engaging activity. Alzheimer’s affects short term memory and often those older memories from their youth are well preserved.
Keep in mind what is important is not the end result but the process. If your loved one cannot complete these tasks to completion that is ok. The feeling that they are contributing and doing something useful, and enjoying spending time together is what counts.
To learn more about the stages of Alzheimer’s READ MORE.