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Try These Activities for Patients With Dementia

If your loved one suffers from dementia, you may have concerns for their mental and physical well-being.

If your loved one suffers from dementia, you may have concerns for their mental and physical well-being. It’s important to stimulate the minds of dementia patients, but how do you know which activities are appropriate for them? The experienced care team at the Mission at Agua Fria Senior Living specializes in memory care services. We suggest you try these activities for patients with dementia:

Plant Vegetables or a Houseplant

If you have an outdoor area, plant a vegetable garden. This is an excellent way of promoting healthy eating while also encouraging your loved one to get outside and breathe some fresh air. Sun exposure can increase a person’s vitamin D levels and keep our bodies healthy, and breathing fresh air is good for our souls. If planting a vegetable garden isn’t an option, you can bring Mother Nature indoors. Caring for a houseplant can give patients living with dementia a sense of purpose by having something to care for each day.

Listen to Soothing Music

Research suggests that music has many benefits for dementia patients, including relieving stress and reducing agitation, anxiety, and depression. Classical music can be soothing, but any music that’s familiar and enjoyable to your loved one is suitable. If your loved one enjoys dancing and is physically able, encourage them to move along to the beat of the music. Even something as simple as clapping the hands or tapping the feet can boost your loved one’s mood.

Engage in Art Therapy

There’s a common saying that a picture’s worth a thousand words. This is particularly true for patients with dementia. Whether it’s painting, drawing, or pottery, the arts can stimulate the mind, body, and soul. Find an arts and crafts project that’s appealing to your loved one and work on it together. It can foster a deeper connection while also helping your loved one find a way to express themselves when verbal communication can be difficult.

Bake a Favorite Recipe

Research has shown that our sense of smell and memory are interconnected. Whether it’s baking bread or making a homemade pie, the taste and smell of a favorite recipe can create a multisensory experience that may arouse pleasant memories from the past. Cooking or baking can also help keep fine motor skills sharp, but keep in mind that your loved one should be supervised at all times to minimize the risk of injuries and other cooking hazards.

Play a Game or Work on a Puzzle

Whether it’s a board game, card game, or jigsaw puzzle, games provide good old-fashioned fun while also keeping our memory sharp. Doodling or coloring can also be an excellent way to relax. Coloring, playing games, or solving puzzles can be socially engaging and intellectually stimulating activities for patients with dementia. While dementia can be a challenging disease, there are plenty of activities you can engage in with your loved one. If your friend or family member is in an advanced stage of dementia and you feel they could benefit from memory care services, reach out to us at the Mission at Agua Fria Senior Living. We have a dedicated care team committed to providing the highest quality memory care services through an array of art, music therapy, and sensory integration programming. Tour the memory care neighborhoods of Mission at Agua Fria and see for yourself all we have to offer.