Memory problems can have a big impact on a person’s confidence. Frustration, loss of motivation and anxiousness – all common symptoms of dementia- can all too quickly lead to people withdrawing from activities and social groups they previously enjoyed.
With a little help however, there is no reason why people living with dementia can’t continue to enjoy the meaningful social engagement and stimulating activities that help ward off depression and ensure life remains both purposeful and fun.
Choosing dementia friendly activities
Start by having a chat about your loved one’s concerns. What is it they find difficult or stressful?
Most activities can be modified to make them accessible in some shape or form once you know what the problems are. The following tips will help you find activities that will be dementia friendly and fun:
Focus on enjoyment, not achievement
A good place to start could be with activities you know the person enjoys and which make use of existing skills and talents. The emphasis here needs to be on getting involved and having fun so that frustration doesn’t creep in if the person feels their abilities are declining.
Encourage involvement in daily life
Build familiar, repetitive tasks into the daily routine. Simple things like setting the table, or sweeping the floor can provide a sense of achievement and help an individual feel like a valued part of the household.
Don’t be afraid to try new activities
Even if the person has never showed any great interest in a particular activity before doesn’t mean they won’t enjoy it now. Activities based around singing, reminiscence, gentle exercise or a sensory response can all be surprisingly enjoyable.
Consider physical problems
Try to make adjustments to tackle any physical problems that may make it harder for the person to join in. New glasses, hearing aids or simply shortening the session if concentration levels are limited can all make a big difference.
Consider the time of day and the person’s mood
Take account of when the person seems happy, anxious, distracted or anxious and try to time activities to the part of the day when they are likely to be most responsive.
A helping hand from Aspire Home Carers
Here at Aspire Home Carers we’re offering a new Chaperone service to provide a helping hand for older people in the Folkestone area.
After being isolated at home for so long throughout Lockdown many people have lost confidence in going outside on their own. Our Chaperone service provides a fully trained and friendly companion to provide practical support and encouragement to attend appointments, to go shopping, get some daily exercise outside, or to use public transport.
All our staff are fully trained in Covid-19 protocols and can help you navigate the changes so you can take your first steps back into the community, and enjoy your favourite activities once more.
To find out all about our Chaperone service visit: aspirehomecarers.co.uk/chaperone-service/