Presents for people living with dementia

By Jonathan Acton - jonathan.acton@homeinstead.ie

If you are like me and you find buying presents a daunting task and one you would rather delegate to someone else than imagine how challenging it is to buy that special gift for someone living with dementia.

The following are some examples of useful gifts that should benefit someone living with dementia.

A red dining set

In Alzheimer’s patients, red colour dining ware is found to increase food intake by 24% and liquid intake by 84%.

Simply, the body needs fuel, and hunger pangs are a very useful reminder to eat.

Unfortunately someone living with dementia might not be able to join up these signals and runs the risk of poor health due to poor nutrition.

Large print 2021 wall calendar

Being able to keep track of time and date decreases confusion and helps seniors stay oriented and engaged with the world.

A jumbo calendar (I’ve seen one online that measures 17x22 inches) is easy to see and understand and has plenty of space for making notes about appointments or special events.

Extra large digital day clock

A large clock that clearly spells out the time, period of the day, full day of the week, month and date is useful.

A display with large, clear letters and no confusing abbreviations is what you are looking for.

The words dementia, Alzheimer’s, and memory loss are intentionally excluded from the packaging, making it a great gift.

DIY custom photo storybook

Life story work can help a senior remember their past but also it can help bring a carer and their senior closer together.

Life story photo work should basically be a simple book or album compiled with artefacts and pictures of momentous occasions in a person’s life.

Create a custom photo book and add text to tell a simple story.

Use photos of people, places, things, hobbies, or activities that have special meaning to create a book they’ll love to flip through.

Custom photo blankets or pillows

This is a special gift and reminds me of a recent post on social media where a CAREGiver brought a pillow that had a picture of his wife on it to her gentleman client.

Because of Covid-19, they were separated and he was heartbroken, but it was moving to see how much it meant to him to feel he had the love of his life close to him again in some way.

And hats off to the CAREGiver who took it upon herself to think outside the box and do something very special and thoughtful.

Tablet or iPad

The gift of a video online communication device has never been so needed as it is now during this pandemic.

With cocooning, isolation and other restrictions it really is an awful time for anyone who may be disposed to loneliness, confusion or depression.

What better way to help keep people safely familiar and connected than using a tablet.

Remember to check in your with elderly friends, neighbours and family this Christmas especially as the weather begins to get colder.

If you feel anyone could use some extra help and support especially this Christmas please contact me at Home Instead on 04493 85260 and I will take care of the rest,

Stay safe.

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