A Dementia Friendly Christmas

Christmas can be the most wonderful time of the year, full of tradition, delicious food and family!

Here at Find Memory Care, we’re feeling festive and want to share with you our favourite things about Christmas.

We understand the importance of treating the ones we care for and buying the perfect gift for someone living with Dementia doesn’t need to be any different.

If your loved ones are into games and jigsaws, they can potentially improve communication and social interaction which is essential for making Christmas enjoyable and stress-free. Not to mention, they’re fun for all the family!

Buying/giving presents with reminiscence value can be a great idea – old photographs, favourite old-fashioned sweets, collectables, books, the list is endless! Personal gifts offer and provide a warm sense of familiarity.

Christmas Dinner
The centrepiece of the big day is the Christmas Day dinner. Gathering around the table, using mix-match chairs and pulling Christmas crackers waiting patiently for the main event.

Although all the fuss can be overwhelming for those living with Dementia, it is important to encourage independence and make them feel comfortable. Give your loved ones the opportunity to select and serve their own food and if you’re pulling out your finest crockery and super white table cloth remember, those living with visual impairment will benefit from contrasting colours.

The Calm After the Storm
The Christmas Day mayhem can come as a shock for someone living with Dementia and a huge jump from their daily routine. A busy morning, followed by lots of social interaction, presents, Christmas dinner then finally it’s time for some serious downtime in front of the telly while we let our belly’s settle.

Providing a quite space for the ones we care for is a good way to give them a chance to take a break and wind down. Somewhere away from all the chaos, maybe even a walk up the garden in the crisp winter air if that’s something they’d enjoy.

If they like watching the Queen’s speech or a good old Christmas movie after dinner and games, this is a good time to relax with a favourite drink or dessert.

Tinsel All Around
Christmas is the one time of year where we can find ourselves with a houseful of guests, visiting relatives or hardly recognising our own home for all the tinsel and Christmas decorations!

Spending long periods of time in unfamiliar places can become a tad confusing for those living with Dementia so here’s a top tip – take a comforting home favourite along such as a blanket, book, picture etc. If you’re expecting a guest with Dementia, try some simple signage for highlighting important places in and around the home, like the toilets. This may help make them feel more at ease knowing where essential places are around the home!

So, with all that in mind – get your Christmas hats on, pull a cracker or two and enjoy Christmas day!