Hola! That means hello in Spanish. I am learning Spanish! I actually remember quite a bit from years ago when I was doing it with my son for Middle School Spanish. I do know some basic words but really can not put a sentence together. That really has nothing to do with the gift idea for today, but it is an update to the topic of Dementia prevention which is to learn a new language.
While it is true that a lot of Dementia is related to memory issues, but there are also socialization issues as well. Today’s gift idea is thinking games, especially games that can be played in a group with family or friends. Did you know from my research that the #1 game that was shown to help people with Dementia was Tetris? Do you remember Tetris? I used to play it on the Nintendo 64 as a teenager. I just downloaded it from the Google Play store for free. If your loved one has a smartphone help them to download it and play away. I am sure they probably have it in a plug-and-play version for the TV or is available on the laptop.
These ideas are from this article.
- Card games. If your loved one is like my loved one they probably played card games a lot when they were younger. If they have mild cognitive decline ask them which ones they loved to play. Pinochle was a big one for my loved one. Then learn how to play it and set up a game. You can play easier card games like War, Go Fish, and Memory. Memory can be very fun if you attach pictures of loved ones, or pets to the cards. Or, old magazine ads I think would be super fun. Have a discussion about those ads, events, or loved ones.
- Bingo. Where I work the ladies used to love to play Bingo. It has kind of fallen out of favor recently but every afternoon they used to sit down to play Bingo. They really only liked it though if there was a snack for a prize, lol. If you are playing in a group of Dementia residents be sure and have someone available to assist those that need it.
- Visual Games. This is similar to the Memory cards I mentioned above.
- Word Puzzles. This does not mean Soduko or crossword puzzles, though those are amazing if your loved one can still do them. Word search puzzles, hidden object puzzles are awesome! Way down at the bottom of that link I shared is a topic about Memory Cafe’s. Which sounds awesome, btw. There are none near me, but my loved one is in a facility where activities are done daily. Anyway on that website is a free game called Memory Joggers. It is perfect as a word puzzle game.
- Video Games. I have already talked about Tetris, but what about other video games. They can help with hand eye coordination, as well as memory.
Some games not mentioned are games about music from their generation. Board games like Chutes and Ladders, Dominoes, Uno, Operation, and possibly others. I found this game that was precisely designed for people with Dementia.
Just remember to be Mindful of their Dementia. You don’t want anything too complicated, or that goes too fast. A game that maybe they played before Dementia might be easier as they may remember the rules and how to play. My loved one absolutely loved Pac-Man, while she couldn’t play it on a smartphone she could play the plug-and-play version of the game.
Search the archives and see the other two gift ideas! Ask me about my Health Coaching and how it can help meet your health goals.
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