Seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia can still enjoy reading
Seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia might still enjoy reading, but often find regular books and magazines frustrating. To solve this problem, we found 4 engaging books that were created specifically for people with Alzheimer’s or dementia.
Fun, engaging activities like reading improve quality of life and can reduce agitation, challenging behavior, and bad moods.
Picture books are a fun and successful activity
It’s important that activities for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, or other types of cognitive impairment are specially designed to make them feel successful.
For example, it wouldn’t be fun for someone with dementia to struggle with a story from a regular book or magazine. It would be a frustrating, negative experience. That’s why these Simple Pleasures for Special Seniors picture books work so well.
Fun Foods, by Dan Koffman
4 books in the Simple Pleasures for Special Seniors series
There are four books in the series: Fruits, Fun Foods, Hand Tools, and Life In The US Military. Each book focuses on one topic and is filled with large and colorful photo illustrations of everyday objects.
These books don’t have any stories or characters to cause confusion or frustration. Only one or two words are used to identify each picture. The books aren’t childish and will appeal to many older adults.
Hand Tools, by Dan Koffman
Why do seniors enjoy these picture books?
Looking at a Simple Pleasures for Special Seniors picture book is a great activity for someone with moderate to severe cognitive impairment, a short attention span, or limited communication skills.
Seniors can look at as many or as few pictures as they want, in any order. The big, bright pictures could spark happy memories or help them connect with the world through these familiar objects.
These books have gotten many positive reviews from memory care professionals, doctors, and family caregivers.
Life In the US Military, by Dan Koffman
Fun for family, visitors, and care staff to enjoy with seniors
Simple Pleasures books can be used anywhere and by anyone. Families, hired caregivers, and staff at assisted living facilities can share this book with the older adults they care for.
They’re especially good for visitors (even children!) who don’t know how to relate to someone with dementia. It’s a relaxing activity they can enjoy together.
How to get the most out of these picture books
To help you and your older adult get the most out of this activity, try these tips:
- Be patient – linger on the pages
- Look for facial responses: eyes widened, smiles, thoughtfulness
- Listen for responses: laughter, any sound, a comment
- If they linger or smile at particular image, use that as a cue to ask a simple question like:
- What do you see?
- What thoughts does this picture give you?
- What feelings does this picture give you?
- Tell me a story about a ‘peach’ (or whatever the picture is)
Options for extra personalization
At the end of each book, a few pages have been left blank. Use these to add simple photos or images that have special meaning for your older adult.
Recommended for you:
- 10 Fun, No-Fail Activities for People with Dementia
- 12 Engaging Activities for Seniors with Dementia: Reduce Agitation and Boost Mood
- 6 Ways to Help Seniors with Alzheimer’s Keep Hands Busy
By DailyCaring Editorial Team
Image: Simple Pleasures for Special Seniors
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