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What is a Dementia Care Package?

September 1, 2023

Navigating the journey of dementia with a loved one is a profound experience, filled with its unique set of challenges, emotions, and countless moments of reflection. One such challenge is the act of gift-giving. As the essence of a person begins to shift due to the effects of dementia, it’s common to feel uncertain about how to connect, what to give, or how to evoke moments of joy and recognition. With every stage of dementia presenting its unique traits, finding the right gift that resonates with them and brings comfort can be a daunting task. But fear not, for the heart often knows the way, and with a little guidance and understanding, you can find the perfect present that speaks to their soul and reminds them of the love that surrounds them.

Whether your loved one is residing in a memory care center, a nursing home, or in the familiar corners of their home, this guide is tailored to shed light on the best gifts for a dementia care package. Let’s embark on this journey of rediscovering the art of gifting for our beloved ones facing dementia.

What Makes Dementia Patients Happy?

Before getting into how to build the perfect care package for someone with dementia, it’s good to get a sense of what makes dementia patients happy. 

Like anyone else, dementia patients get joy from many different sources, from social interaction to meaningful activities and more. While everyone is different, people with dementia often enjoy familiar environments, comfortable situations, and consistent routines, which help decrease their anxiety. 

Getting outdoors and spending time walking around in nature is an example of something that can be very calming and joy-inducing in memory care. Depending on their stage of dementia, some patients also enjoy simple puzzles and games or getting physically active.

What Is A Good Hobby For Someone With Dementia?

Just as lots of things can make dementia patients happy, many great hobbies exist based on their preferences and ability. While this is a non-exhaustive list, here are some hobbies that help promote mental stimulation, decrease anxiety, and provide a sense of enjoyment for people with dementia:

  • Arts and crafts. Dabbling in simple arts such as coloring or painting can provide dementia patients with a creative outlet and a sense of accomplishment.
  • Reading. Reading is intellectually stimulating, and familiar books, magazines, or picture books can be a fun and accessible activity.
  • Gardening. Easy gardening tasks can provide peace and a connection to nature.
  • Yoga or tai chi. Depending on their level of physicality, doing gentle yoga, tai chi, or stretches can promote mindfulness and relaxation.

What Is A Good Gift To Get Someone With Dementia?

There are tons of options for both useful and sentimental gifts you can get for someone with dementia. When considering them, you should think about your loved one’s personality and preferences and take into account their current abilities. Here are some suggestions for presents you can get for someone with dementia (take these as gift ideas for someone with early dementia, gifts for late-stage dementia patients, or even birthday gifts for dementia patients!):

  • Sensory gifts. Sensory gifts for dementia patients, such as soft blankets, scented lotions, or simple and engaging puzzles, can be excellent soothing and stimulating presents. 
  • Personalized items. The more personal the gift, usually the better! Customized items like embroidered pillows, personalized calendars/posters/puzzles, a digital picture frame with rotating family photos, etc., can bring them a sense of familiarity and joy.
  • Time together. Often, spending quality time with them is one of the best gifts you could give. Try out activities that they enjoy, such as going for a walk, listening to music, or simply engaging in conversation.

What Is A Homemade Gift For Someone With Dementia?

Homemade gifts can sometimes be even more meaningful than picking out the perfect present. This may be especially true for personalized gifts for dementia patients, as homemade presents can evoke a sense of nostalgia, safety, and comfort. Try out these options for DIY dementia gifts:

  • Scrapbooks.
  • Blankets.
  • Potpourri.
  • Personalized playlists.
  • Handwritten letters.

What Is A Dementia Care Package?

Now that we’ve discussed things that often make people experiencing memory loss happy and a few ideas for great gifts, here are some suggestions for what you should consider putting in your next care package for dementia patients.

  • Familiar music or movies. For people in memory care, music and movies from their younger years can help evoke emotions and memories, providing comfort and entertainment.
  • Art supplies. As we mentioned, art can be a very calming activity and therapeutic outlet; activities like coloring books, watercolor sets, or simple craft kits could be great in a dementia care package.
  • Aromatherapy. Things like essential oil diffusers, especially with calming scents like lavender or chamomile, can create a relaxing atmosphere for your loved one.
  • Comforting items. Going back to sensory gifts, consider items like weighted blankets, plush toys, or fidget blankets to provide comfort and sensory stimulation.
  • Personalized or homemade items. As we’ve discussed, there are tons of options for great homemade or personalized gifts for dementia patients that you could include.
  • Puzzles and games. Consider dementia-specific or large-piece puzzles, easy memory games, or other activities that encourage cognitive stimulation.

What Help Can You Get For Someone With Dementia?

Beyond sending someone a dementia care package and simply spending quality time with them, there are other options for support that you can provide for your loved one. Here are some examples of help you can get for someone with dementia: 

  • Medical help, such as a mental health professional or a neurologist.
  • Caregivers who provide emotional support, physical/home support, and companionship.
  • Research on support organizations like local senior centers that typically offer resources and social gatherings.
  • Legal and financial planning, keeping them financially protected.
  • Research assisted living and memory care facilities to make sure that your loved one is in the best hands while going through major life changes.

How Story Cottage Can Help

At our Story Cottage memory care facilities, you’ll have peace of mind knowing your loved one resides in a comforting home with premium safety features, surrounded by peers and nurturing staff. Learn more about how we proudly support the health and happiness of our local communities by providing the finest memory care facilities in Indiana today.

Schedule a visit to Story Cottage Carey GrovelStory Cottage Meridian Hills, or Story Cottage West Clay to see our innovative solutions and comfortable homes. Contact us today to learn more!