Dementia is a debilitating disease and is equally hard for patients and family members. The most common symptoms include memory loss, difficulty with language and movement, and loss of judgment. It is incredibly confusing for dementia patients not to know what day it is or who they are talking to.
If you have a loved one, whether a family member or a friend, struggling with dementia and living in an assisted living memory care home, here is a list of 10 gifts that would make their life a little bit easier and more joyful.
1. Large Digital Clock
A large clock that shows the day of the week, date, and time is incredibly helpful for people with dementia. It removes the confusion that often comes with not knowing what day or time it is and helps them feel more assured. You can also set digital clocks to include timers and alarms to read out the time and day several times a day.
Place this clock in a location that is easy to spot, and you will give your loved one the gift of precious information.
2. Weighted Blankets Make Comforting Dementia Gifts
They provide a sense of security and coziness and also provide pressure therapy. While it’s not advisable if the person suffers from circulatory or respiratory issues, weighted blankets work astonishingly well for people who enjoy cuddling and presence.
The pressure of the blanket produces mood-boosting hormones, thereby reducing stress and lulling your loved one to a night of deep sleep.
3. Personalized Clothing
Robes, fluffy pajamas, and soft clothes provide comfort and a sense of coziness. Consider buying adaptive clothing to put on and take off, and countless brands cater to senior citizen clothing, so you can choose any that falls within your budget.
Other personalized items include mugs, pillows, and blankets with photos of loved ones. These will gently remind them of who they are and give them a sense of being surrounded by love. A comfy pillow that says the best sister or a mug with photos of grandchildren will light up their day each time they see it.
Memory care homes provide specialized care for people with memory issues; you can chip in to improve the memory of somebody you care about by gifting them puzzles.
Jigsaw puzzles help people with dementia reclaim some dexterity and cognitive function as they are required to pick out puzzle pieces and fit them together. Make sure to buy simple puzzles that fit the patient’s condition.
The other types of puzzles you can buy are crossword puzzles with similar benefits. You can get dementia-specific puzzles or print easy ones out in large print to ease the experience.
5. Conversation Cards
These would encourage conversation, helping them jog their memory and find the right words. Conversation cards are generally 52 two-sided cards with pictures and conversation prompts. They also have easy-to-answer questions that allow you to share trivia while the patient reminisces about their experience. This is a dementia gift that can help both of you.
6. Music Players Make Great Dementia Gifts
A music player combined with comfy and big headphones that the patient is least likely to misplace is one of the best gifts you can give since musical memory is not as severely affected by diseases that cause dementia.
A music player with the patient’s favorite songs and playlists will bring back the joy of memories and help them relive the good times. It also improves their emotional health, reducing restlessness and prompting the urge to connect with their loved ones.
7. Motion-Sensor Night Lights
For people in assisted living memory care homes living in separate rooms, night times are plagued with restlessness and unease. Motion-sensor night lights or any such automatic and customized light system will ease things up if somebody gets up in the middle of the night to use the restroom or has trouble sleeping. check with your memory care home to see if this would be a good dementia gift.
8. Assistive Technology
Dementia-friendly mobile phones allow users to make calls regardless of cognitive impairments. They are easy to use as the screen never shuts down, and calls are placed using pictures. Such phones include emergency numbers and have alternative solutions if dementia patients make unnecessary emergency calls.
The other option is the Alexa voice assistant, a hands-free, voice-controlled device. It plays music, makes voice calls, reads news and books, and even tells jokes. This is also perfect for calling dementia patients who are unable to answer calls.
9. Fidget Pillows Make Great Dementia Gifts
These are portable cushions with strings, zippers, and Velcro strips sewn on the sides. It’s perfect for people with dementia as it gives them something to do while they sit still. They can take their pillows anywhere they’d like and give their restless energy an outlet, making up for a good time. Make your own fidget pillow or purchase one.
10. Soft Toys
People with dementia rely on sensory pleasures to feel grounded and safe, and soft toys are perfect for cuddling up to or squeezing when somebody is particularly fidgety. They can be placed at the bedside, or the patient can take them wherever they go to experience comfort. You can also easily find dementia-specific toys that are easy to clean and reuse.
Finding the best gift for people with dementia can be challenging, but we hope this list gives you a good headstart in getting the most appropriate and helpful present for your loved ones.
We Are Here To Help
At Sycamore Creek Ranch Memory Care we are here to help. We want families to make the best decision for their situation
Furthermore, the staff at Sycamore Creek Ranch is proactive. That means we are not waiting for a problem to arise. Instead, we are actively engaged with each and every resident. And with only 16 residents we can do that!
If you are looking for Memory Care in The Woodlands or Memory Care in Spring, Texas come for a tour at Sycamore Creek Ranch! See how we can help