How to Provide Sensory Stimulation for Older Adults with Dementia

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Sensory stimulation involves activating one or more of the five senses. While most people are surrounded by sensory experiences throughout the day, it is important to stimulate the senses of seniors with dementia. Sensory stimulation helps seniors with dementia retain their memories and communicate better. If your loved one has dementia, here are a few ways you can stimulate his or her senses.

Start a Sensory Garden

The sense of smell can help your loved one recall memories, and you can also use certain scents to promote relaxation when he or she becomes agitated. Help your loved one plant an herb or flower garden filled with fragrant plants. Consider adding plants with strong scents such as lavender and rosemary that your loved one can sniff whenever he or she wants to enjoy a pleasant sensation.

Regular sensory stimulation is one of the many ways to boost a senior’s health, wellbeing, and overall quality of life. Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Families can trust in Ahwatukee, AZ, non-medical in-home care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living a longer and healthier life.

Offer a Hand Massage

Touch is a powerful sense, and you can help your loved one relax by giving him or her a soothing hand massage. Make sure to use unscented lotion to avoid triggering allergies, and use gentle motions as you massage your loved one’s skin.

Provide Favorite Treats from the Past

Dementia sometimes makes it difficult for seniors to remember some of their favorite things from when they were younger. However, seniors with a sweet tooth may instantly respond to delicious flavors such as bread pudding or peach cobbler. If your loved one is on a special diet, consider using fruits or veggies he or she loved as a kid.

Play a Variety of Different Sounds

Caregivers often play a senior’s favorite music to keep him or her entertained and relaxed. However, you can also use other types of sounds to perk up your loved one. Try playing different animal noises, and see if your loved one can guess the animal that makes each sound. Alternatively, you could play multicultural tunes to help your loved one recall memories.

Create a Trinket Box

Many seniors with dementia enjoy having a trinket box filled with things that stimulate their memories. You can add a sensory element to the trinket box by including items that engage your loved one’s senses. A small bottle of perfume, a jingly necklace, or even a scrap of fabric from a special occasion dress can all generate sensations that make your loved one feel good.

Older adults with dementia can benefit from receiving professional in-home care. A dedicated caregiver can offer regular mental stimulation, which could slow cognitive decline. If your senior loved one needs help managing an illness or assistance with daily tasks, make sure you choose a top-rated elder care agency. Ahwatukee Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life in the golden years. From the mentally stimulating activities in our Cognitive Therapeutics Method to our friendly Care Managers who are available to answer your questions 24 hours a day, we offer a wide array of high-quality at-home care services.

Go Outside

The outdoors are filled with opportunities to stimulate your loved one’s senses. Just feeling the warmth of the sun or a cool breeze on the skin can give your loved one something special to enjoy. You can also enhance this activity by giving your loved one a popsicle or something cool to drink.

Caring for a loved one with dementia and providing him or her with sensory stimulation can be a challenging task. If you are the primary caregiver for a senior family member and want additional assistance from a professional caregiver, Ahwatukee Home Care Assistance is here to help. Our caregivers are available for a few hours a day to help seniors with daily tasks, and we also offer 24-hour live-in care for those who need more extensive assistance. To create a comprehensive dementia home care plan for your loved one, call one of our professional Care Managers at (480) 448-6215 today.


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