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Innovative Dementia Care Tips That Are Truly Life-Changing

Taking care of a loved one with dementia is unlike almost every other responsibility you’ll tackle. It calls for you to dig deep down into your reserves of patience, flexibility, and perhaps most importantly, creativity. You have to be prepared to pivot at a moment’s notice from one tactic to another to promote a fulfilling and enriching life for the person you love, all while dealing with the more challenging components of the illness. It requires understanding and implementing innovative dementia care tips to make life the best it can be for the person you love.

Our highly trained dementia care team is here to help with some creative tips you can easily implement to make each day better for a person with dementia.

  • Tailored storytelling: Customize familiar stories to incorporate specifics from the person’s past. For example, if the person loved fishing at a specific lake, weave the name of the lake into a story you’re telling to spark memories and conversations.
  • Soothing scents: Aromatherapy can work wonders in providing a calming effect to lessen anxiety and agitation. Try scents like lavender, peppermint, or vanilla.
  • Montessori methods: Adapt Montessori principles to create meaningful and engaging activities that stimulate cognitive function and promote independence.
  • Adaptive games: Modify simple games like bingo, puzzles, and memory matching to accommodate cognitive changes. For example, use larger, easy-to-handle pieces for puzzles or brightly colored cards for bingo to improve visibility and ease of use.
  • The magic of music: Music is an unbelievably effective tool you will likely want to turn to again and again. This can involve creating a playlist of the person’s favorite songs to sing and dance to together, playing instruments, attending concerts (in person or online), etc.
  • Biophilic design: Incorporate elements of nature, including plants or nature-inspired artwork, into the home to create a relaxing and familiar atmosphere.
  • Red tableware: Studies report that using red plates and cups may increase food intake in people with dementia by enhancing contrast and visibility of food.
  • Reminiscence boxes: Create personalized boxes full of meaningful objects or photos from the person’s past to spark memories and facilitate reminiscing.
  • Light therapy: Exposure to sunlight or specialized light therapy devices can help regulate sleep patterns and improve mood in people with dementia.
  • The hand-under-hand technique: When helping with tasks, gently place your hand under the person’s hand to guide them, promoting a sense of control and dignity.
  • Customized exercise routines: Incorporate gentle, guided exercises that match the individual’s current physical abilities and help maintain mobility. Seek the advice of the person’s doctor for recommendations.
  • Sensory stimulation: Engage the senses with tactile activities like gardening or fabric folding, which can soothe and ground those with dementia.
  • Virtual reality (VR): VR experiences tailored to the individual’s interests and abilities can offer immersive and therapeutic experiences, triggering memories and improving mood.

Partner with our dementia care specialists for additional socialization opportunities, creative activities specific to the person’s interests, and the chance for you to step away for some well-earned time to yourself. Serving Santa Maria, Lompoc, Nipomo, and throughout San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties, you can reach us any time at 805-737-4357.

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