Understanding How to Prevent Boredom in Dementia Patients
Salt and pepper. Macaroni and cheese. Peanut butter and jelly. Some things are just meant to go together. One combination you want to avoid, however, is dementia and boredom. Studies have revealed that boredom in dementia leads to an increase in:
Not only that, but boredom in family members providing care for someone with dementia is also troubling, resulting in an increased risk for burnout and depression.
How to Prevent Someone With Dementia From Becoming Bored
Clearly, preventing boredom is crucial. These proven strategies are a good place to start.
Know what sparks interest, and seek out opportunities for engagement accordingly. For instance, if the person’s face lights up whenever they see a dog, explore pet therapy or arrange for regular visits with friends and family who have dogs.
Take plenty of time for reminiscing. Use photo albums, scrapbooks, and home movies. Browse the internet for top news articles from a particular time period to talk about together.
Play the person’s favorite music through a variety of means: the radio, a playlist, videos of concerts, outings to local school musical programs or the person’s religious organization to enjoy spiritual songs. Perhaps even plan a karaoke night with family, or a piano or guitar singalong.
Provide plenty of meaningful activities that build a sense of purpose and self-worth. This could include helping with preparing meals, folding laundry, sorting nuts and bolts in a toolbox, or whatever provides a connection to the person’s past passions or occupation.
Since loneliness and boredom often occur together, make sure there are regular opportunities for socializing in accordance with the person’s comfort level. If large groups of visitors are overwhelming, for instance, ask family members and friends to visit one or two at a time.
Keep a journal of which activities were most well received, as well as those that seemed to be of less interest.
A companion from The Care Company is a great way to bring a breath of fresh air into the day of someone with dementia. Our caregivers are experienced at overcoming boredom in dementia and highly skilled in creative techniques to boost engagement and contentment. A caregiver from The Care Company will add much-needed socialization for your family member, while giving you the opportunity to step away and take time for yourself.
Some of the many ways we can help include:
Engagement in ability-appropriate activities that provide purpose and help boost memory
Assistance with personal care and hygiene
Planning and preparing healthy meals and snacks
Providing transportation and accompaniment for fun outings
Conversations and reminiscing
And much more