Tips for Planning Activities for Elderly People Who Have Dementia

By Mark Schmidt, 9:00 am on July 22, 2019

If your senior loved one is living with dementia, his or her day should be filled with activities that keep the mind and body busy while providing a sense of accomplishment. Seniors with dementia often lose the ability to structure their own days, which means you need to step in by planning things for your loved one to do. As you start planning your loved one’s daily routine, you can use these strategies to incorporate activities into the schedule that fit his or her abilities and interests.

Keep Their Abilities in Mind

The first thing you need to do is think about how your loved one manages his or her current daily activities. Planning an activity that’s beyond your loved one’s capabilities will only lead to frustration. Think about your loved one’s attention span, ability to follow instructions, and whether he or she prefers to work alone or with someone. Then check any activity you come up with against this list to determine if it’s possible for your loved one to do.

Plan to Satisfy Specific Needs

Your loved one’s activities should be personally tailored to fit his or her interests and relate in some way to his or her normal everyday life. For instance, you can plan an activity that relates to your loved one’s former career, such as watering plants if he or she was a botanist. Remember the focus of the activity isn’t necessarily on what gets accomplished. The main point is to keep your loved one busy and provide a sense of enjoyment.

Seniors with dementia can optimize their quality of life with the help of a highly trained, experienced professional caregiver. If your senior loved one needs professional dementia care, Tucson caregivers are available around the clock to provide the high-quality care he or she needs. Using the revolutionary Cognitive Therapeutics Method, dementia caregivers can help your loved one stay mentally engaged and delay the progression of the disease.

Provide a Range of Activities

Activities for seniors with dementia can be as simple as normal daily chores, such as wiping down the table. They can also be more complicated, such as working on a painting of a landscape. Your loved one’s activity plans should include things to do that fall into different categories. For example, painting can stimulate creativity, while doing a puzzle may be viewed as an intellectual activity. Thinking about activities based on what category they fall into can help you plan a well-rounded day for your loved one.

Consider Who Will Provide Assistance

By the time you’re planning activities for your loved one, he or she likely needs assistance during many parts of the day. Try to match activities to times when the person who’s best able to help is available to visit your loved one. For instance, you may choose to plan simple housekeeping activities for times when you can let your loved one work alongside you as you handle other chores. Alternatively, planning a social activity such as a conversation over lunch needs to take place when someone other than you can be there to provide additional stimulation.

Seniors with dementia often need assistance with everyday activities so they can age in place in safety and comfort. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elderly home care families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

Watch Their Reactions for Future Planning Purposes

Your loved one may not enjoy every activity you plan, and paying attention lets you know how to adjust or remove activities in the future. Observe your loved one as he or she engages in activities, and consider jotting down a few notes. Over time, some of the activities may need to be adjusted to accommodate your loved one’s changing abilities.

If your loved one is living with dementia, having a trained professional caregiver close by can provide you and your family with much-needed peace of mind. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of senior home care. Tucson families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. If you need compassionate, professional dementia care for your loved one, call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (520) 276-6555.