Social and cognitive stimulation such as activities or games which help keep them involved or engaged are very beneficial to a person with dementia. When the diseased has progressed, winning or sticking to rules doesn’t matter, it is just the act of participating that is most important and the end result is irrelevant.
When selecting activities, only choose activities that won’t cause an injury to your older adult. For example, some seniors will put things in their mouth and try to eat them. If that’s the case, avoid small objects that could be a choking hazard.
Take a look at these 4 activities that will give you the opportunity to share time with your loved one, and always remember that there should be no right or wrong way of doing things, it should just be a fun and satisfying way to enjoy the time.
Vintage Spinning Tops
Many will remember them from their childhood and will enjoy winding them up to play as they once did in their youth. Try to get the traditional wooden ones with a short iron tip and string.
This game is very helpful for people who have dementia because it’s a colourful game where the rules are to match colours and shapes promoting tactical maneuvers and planned strategies.
Ancient game to be played indoors or outdoors. It consists of six rope rings and a wooden spike. Players sit back three metres (or less) from spike and throw rings. The person with the most rings on the spike is the winner. This game is a good one to improve hand-eye coordination.
Pairing or Sorting
Another way to enjoy handy activities is to have the person sort inexpensive hardware parts like these nuts, washers, or bolts. Some others might also enjoy sorting a big pile of coins as a reminder of when they used to manage household finances. Pairing socks or sorting laundry could also resonate with a person who was a homemaker or was responsible for laundry.
The challenge is to find the right games to match the skills and interests of the person with the stage of dementia they are going through. So keep it simple and if something is not working out, change course. Don’t over-estimate what the person is capable of but at the same time, don’t underestimate them either. You might be pleasantly surprised by their hidden abilities!
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