Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Perfect gift ideas for people with dementia

You as activities directors, other healthcare professionals and caregivers will be buying or suggesting gifts for people with dementia

Here are a few grand suggestions:

First on the list of gifts for people is a book by Susan Berg called Adorable Photographs of Our Baby -- Meaningful, Mind-Stimulating Activities and More for the Memory Challenged, Their Loved Ones and Involved Professionals, This book features baby photographs that seniors with dementia love. This book shares a plethora of idea sand resources for you.

Another gift a dementia person will fancy is a classic musical video or DVD. Your mother will enjoy watching something from the good old days and singing the songs played throughout the picture.Here are a few suggestions: Singin’ in the Rain, Meet Me in St. Louis, or Shall We Dance

Next is a sing a long CD or audio cassette of their favorite songs. There is a series of these called, Old Time Favorites by Nancy Pitkin

You may want to get a sing a long video where you loved one can see and hear performers singing songs they love. A good one is, Sing-Along with Phil Bernardi: Songs We Know and Love

Here is another idea. Give some hand lotion. Any kind will do. Just be aware of any allergies or pain issues she might have. If she can tolerate it, those with a pleasant scent work well. Give her a relaxing hand massage talking about how good the hand massage feels and maybe about the good old days, as well

If you cannot afford or do not have time to get these gifts, give the gift of yourself. No matter how hard it is for you to visit mom, she will appreciate your company even though she may not be able to express it. Take her for a walk, sing some of your favorite songs together, give her a hand massage. Just share some quality time with her. Both of you will feel better. Do remember to be upbeat animated and excited about visiting. No arguing, please. .

A phone call or a card will do if there is no way you can visit in person. At least they will know you are thinking of them. Then visit on another day.

So no matter what you do, do not forget people with dementia because it will make you and them feel good. What could be better than that!

Order any of the products mentioned in the article at Order the book, Adorable Photographs of Our Baby -- Meaningful, Mind-Stimulating Activities and More for the Memory Challenged, Their Loved Ones and Involved Professionals, at Amazon or at Activity Directors Network

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Game system aims to slow the advance of dementia

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Naperville Sun


When Naperville resident Jim McArdle began having trouble with his usual crossword puzzles and became frustrated with them, he went to see a doctor.

The 81-year-old was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease more than Last month, his son Jim E. McArdle of North Aurora entered a Father's Day online contest and won something that could help his father sort out life's other puzzles.

The system, called Dakim Brain Fitness, operates more like a game than a test, but tests both short- and long-term memory and operates in real time, adjusting the difficulty level based on each of the user's answers. The easy-to-use, touch-screen system aims to slow the advance of Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia. It hit the market in June.

The Dakim Brain Fitness System was created by inventor and CEO Dan Michel after he helped his father struggle through 13 years of Alzheimer's. During this time, Michel realized there is a therapeutic and emotional value in mental stimulation and came up with the system.

"It's based on standardized neurological tests," said Dakim representative Erika Schmit. "It tracks your success, and at the end of a session, you can see what your score is; long-term versus short-term."

As the elder McArdle answered the system's questions in his dining room, they would either get harder as he answered correctly, or easier if he answered incorrectly. This is what's known as "real time," Schmit said.