Alzheimer’s is a serious disease that no one should take lightly. However, that does not mean you cannot find fun activities to enjoy with your loved one who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. In fact, it is essential that you help them feel like they are still a part of your life and can still enjoy what goes on around them Here are some fun activities that may be enjoyable and at the same time beneficial to people with Alzheimer’s.
Activities for Exercise
It is important to help your senior loved one stay as active as possible. Exercise has been proven to help your mind stay more alert and even though you cannot cure Alzheimer’s, you can help your loved one fight the effects as much as possible.
- Help your senior family member plant and care for a garden. Choose a container garden if you do not feel it is safe for them to be outside. This is a great activity to share with grandchildren and help them spend quality time with their grandparent.
- Go for a walk to a park or any nature area. If your loved one is in the middle stages of the disease and gets agitated by loud noises or crowded places, choose a quiet area or time when the park is less busy. You can even scout out the area beforehand to make sure the senior could handle the environment.
- Get them moving to music and dance, even if it is in the privacy of the home. Alzheimer patients often respond to music when they stop interacting in other ways. This is a great activity for someone who is in the later stages. You can dance with them for added security and enjoy the close bond.
Make Them Feel Needed
When your loved ones realizes that they cannot do the things they used to, they may feel like they are a nuisance instead of a help. These activities will help show them what they can do instead of what they cannot.
- Cook a meal together just for the two of you or invite family members for a small gathering. They can even fix a dish to send home with you to feed your family. It will help them to feel more independent, useful and needed.
- Make homemade gifts. If your loved ones have craft skills and can still remember how to do things, have them help you make a Christmas or birthday gift for someone. It helps them to keep those memories in their minds in an enjoyable way.
Enjoy Special Time
Often family caregivers get wrapped up in all of the necessary things they must do for their loved one with Alzheimer’s and overlook opportunities just to enjoy their time together. These activities will help you have quality time with your senior family member.
- Work puzzles together – It can be crossword, jigsaw, or any other kind of puzzle they enjoy working on. This will help to exercise their brain and have fun at the same time.
- Look at old photos together and share stories – This is a great activity to involve grandchildren as they hear stories from the “old” days when their grandparents were little and at the same time helps godparents to keep their memories in place longer.
- Make a scrapbook – This is a great idea as a gift for your senior loved ones when they are no longer able to remember things. It can be about when someone was a child or a fun vacation or anything that has special meaning. Let the senior help decide and be a part of the process. Even if they are in the middle stages of the disease, they can pick out photos or embellishments to use.
- Sing together – Let them pick their favorite songs and have a karaoke afternoon. Many times people with Alzheimer’s will remember words to songs even when they cannot remember other things.
Once you chose an activity to do with your senior loved one, here are some tips on making sure that the experience is pleasant rather than stressful.
- Plan activities they enjoyed before they had Alzheimer’s.
- Adapt the activities to their performance level and avoid ones that make them feel like they have failed.
- Do something on a regular basis. Get a caregiver involved if they have hom ecare services.