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Helpful Daily Activities for Dementia and Alzheimer’s Patients

Seniors playing checkers

Aging is an inevitable part of our lives, regardless of gender, race, or geographical location. More than just aging forgetfulness, a lot of seniors suffer from the effects of dementia of all kinds, including Alzheimer’s Disease. Dementia refers to loss of memory, language, problem-solving, and other thinking abilities that may be severe enough to interfere with daily life.

Like your body muscles, the human brain needs exercise too. While you may reduce the risk or delay the onset of dementia with physical exercise, mental exercise, and an improved diet, these activities do not guarantee the prevention of dementia. For caregivers, there are many fun and practical activities that many seniors will enjoy and help exercise their minds.                                   

Memory Care Program Activities For Residents At Shaker Place

At Shaker Place, we have specifically tailored activities to stimulate our dementia residents cognitively through a wide variety of programming. Here are some fun memory-stimulating activities we plan here for our residents.

  1. Start the day – At Shaker Place we like to start the day off by going over current events and orienting our memory care residents to the day of the week, date, month, and year. Small reminders can help make a big difference with these residents and at Shaker Place, we always want to start the day out right.
  2. Exercise classes – Some gentle cardio is great for seniors. Outdoor exercise affords them both sunlight and fresh air. At Shaker Place, some past activities have included basketball and lifting weights.
  3. Game night – Playing games like Bingo, puzzles, and crosswords are stimulating for the mind and great for exercising the brain. Some favorites at Shaker Place have been Mind Joggers trivia, larger piece jig saw puzzles, word search, hidden object puzzles, Finish the Song Title, and Finish the Phrase games. Competition is fierce and always a resident favorite.
  4. Listening to music – A combination of good music and movement can help bring back good memories from earlier in life. Music is also therapeutic and helps with stress. You can always hear someone playing their favorite tunes when you’re at Shaker Place. We highly encourage residents to dance, sing, clap, or tap along. Music is not only great for memory care, but it is also uplifting for all of our residents.
  5. Writing letters – Writing can help stimulate the mind. Some of our residents participate in letter writing where they make cards for deployed troops or thank you cards for organizations who have donated or volunteered at Shaker Place. It’s a fun way to stimulate the mind and get creative.
  6. Reading circles – Reading helps stimulate the mind and is a great activity for those suffering from dementia. We encourage residents to read out loud excerpts or passages from their favorite books.
  7. Reminiscing groups – Remind loved ones or favorite memories they have made. Old scrapbooks, photo albums, or video collections are great for this! At Shaker Place, we also pick themes for our discussions about the past. Previous topics have included former presidents, Thanksgiving past, or their favorite Thanksgiving dish and the recipe. This has quickly become a resident favorite here at Shaker Place.
  8. Create – Building and creating art can be quite stimulating. Consider embroidery, painting, and even paper mache or wood projects. Physical activities like kneading clay, scrubbing, or sanding help the mind focus and have easily become a favorite of all the residents at Shaker Place.
  9. Sightseeing activities – When possible, our staff plans fun outings for residents, including trips to local festivals, stores, historic sites, and more.
  10. Occupational therapy activities – At Shaker Place, we also incorporate everyday tasks and chores into our day in between programs with activities like sorting and /or folding baby clothing, towels, napkins, and fastening buttons. These activities help keep the mind focused.

At Shaker Place Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, we provide our residents with many daily activities to help with physical and mental exercise. We understand that the decision to move a loved one into a nursing home is an overwhelming one, and we’re here to help every step of the way. We take the time to give you a tour, answer all of your questions, and assist with the application process.

To speak to a Shaker Place specialist today about dementia rehabilitation, please call (518) 869-2231.