Whether you are the main caregiver or you’ve hired a Trusted Senior Care Provider to look after your elderly loved one, it’s important to not only recognize the early symptoms of dementia but also to keep a dementia patient engaged and focused.
When you are working with a senior who is suffering with dementia, it’s important to keep their mental faculties sharp and focused by challenging the mind. This can be done through any number of ways, from brain-teasers to short strolls down Memory Lane.
For those of you searching for health tips for seniors, here are some helpful hints for challenging the mental acuity of elderly individuals dealing with dementia.
Those little tasks around the house that you might consider menial or boring can actually be extremely beneficial for seniors who are suffering from dementia. Giving your senior small tasks to complete is a very effective method for keeping them fully engaged.
Take laundry for instance. Folding it can be a challenge for the mind that will do a dementia patient a whole world of good. Have your elderly loved one fold towels or perform some other light task that doesn’t require a lot of strength or agility and won’t keep them on their feet for long periods of time. This will not only help get the chores done around the house, it will make your senior feel like he or she has contributed.
Completing a puzzle is a great way to get the mind engaged no matter how young or old you are. So having a dementia patient complete one can be highly beneficial for keeping their mental capacities working at full throttle.
You may want to monitor how challenging the puzzle might be, as to avoid frustration and doubt from setting in with your elderly loved one. If the puzzle is too difficult, they may decide to walk away from it and that won’t help them remain engaged.
A good option for providing the loved one with a puzzle that’s easy to complete is to make your own and cut it up so that the image can be put back together with just five or six pieces. Even better, make the puzzle with an image that’s familiar or pleasant for your senior. It might be of the grandchildren or an image that sparks pleasant memories from their life.
Build a Box of Memories
Speaking of familiar and pleasant memories, it’s also a good idea to create a box of items, pictures, ticket stubs, anything that sparks happy memories of their childhood, their career, even of family and friends. Perhaps include memories related to a spouse or loved one who may not be here anymore.
Maybe your senior had a special hobby or liked to collect something specific. You can build the box around one of these things. The point of this activity is to let your senior look back and recall the precise memories that are connected to all of these items and keepsakes.