Ideas for Activities

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One difficult challenge friends and families of those with dementia face is having meaningful visits. As the underlying disease progresses, patients lose the ability to carry on a general conversation. So how can you have a meaningful time together once words are elusive?

Judith Levy, an occupational therapist, has considered this issue from both a professional and personal perspective, and has written a new book, Activities to Do with Your Parent Who Has Alzheimer’s Dementia.

Ms. Levy’s mother has lived with Alzheimer’s for nine years, and Ms. Levy has brought her professional skills to design a range of activities to do with her mother. She presents them in her book, along with comments on how they may be adapted, based on the abilities of the patient.

Many of the activities provide opportunities to share memories or free associate. The author provides great common sense advice about how to set up activities, and assessment sheets that may be helpful for families trying to find successful ways to connect.

The book’s activities are somewhat skewed toward women, which is understandable given that Ms. Levy developed the book based on her experiences with her mother. However, many of the activities can be modified for men. If you are looking for some ideas about how to have more meaningful and fun visits, take a look at this book.

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