Crafts are one of the best activities for a loved one with dementia. There are a wide range of possibilities suited to each individual’s interests and skill level – and the benefits are incredible.
Simple crafts stimulate the creative side of a loved one’s brain, while the tactile stimulation of working with different textures can be both soothing and therapeutic. In addition, the act of working on a craft to completion is an activity that can give a loved one with dementia a sense of purpose and build their confidence and well-being at a confusing and discouraging time in their lives.
Crafts also give family members a fun way to engage with their loved one. Activities like the chalkboard cheese tray below become a project that encourages conversation and involvement in the plans of the day. The cheese tray can be a way to introduce a plan for an upcoming family gathering or they can be turned into gifts that family and friends will treasure knowing it was made by their loved one’s own hands.
Rustic Chalkboard Cheese Trays
What You’ll Need:
- Wood slices (sometimes called wood rounds or country rounds)
- Chalkboard paint
- Paint brushes
- Chalk marker
- Polyurethane sealant
- Paint the wood slice with the chalkboard paint.
- Leave a small border around the edge to keep the rustic feel.
- Allow to dry.
- Paint a second coat.
- Allow to dry.
- Chalk markers can be used to add a name to the cheese tray.
- Apply a coat of polyurethane and allow to cure to make the tray safe for displaying food. If you do not use a food safe sealant, place a piece of wax paper under food items.
See more activities for dementia patients.
- While doing activities with a loved one with dementia, engage them in conversation. Play music they enjoy softly in the background to create a positive mood.
- Even though your loved one may not remember names or things that happened in recent days, they may still remember their childhood. Talk to them about parties they remember from growing up.
- Activities for people with dementia have the best chance of success early in the day when your loved one is well rested. If they don’t want to participate or get frustrated, don’t force it. Try again another time.
Crossroads Hospice & Palliative Care is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year to support patients with dementia and their families. Please call us at 1-888-564-3405 to learn more about how our unique care programs help provide a higher quality of life for dementia patients while helping caregivers avoid burnout.
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