Memories Reawakened: Giving the Gift of a Life Story Book to Someone With Dementia
The winter months often bring with them a time to reminisce – and create new memories. But for anyone who struggles with memory decline, this time of year can be a tough reminder of memories lost.
Each of us has a unique identity and life story. Seniors, in particular, have lived many life chapters – and typically welcome the opportunity to reminisce and share life learnings. A resource from Lifetime Wellness helps senior living providers get to know their residents’ life stories and build a person-centered care plan that can help make life more familiar and comfortable.
Lillian, formerly an opera singer and today a resident living with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias, likes to sing loudly. It’s her way of communicating. But it can be disruptive. To help her focus on other activities that feel familiar, staff in the community where she lives put together a “life engagement kit.”
For the 5.7 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) – and their families – days can be filled with feelings of angst and isolation. We’re working to lessen those feelings and provide a non-pharma approach to memory care.
A groundbreaking program called Music & Memory™ has brought life-changing hope to people who suffer from ADRD, helping to trigger memories, build bridges, and improve quality of life. Launched in 2006 by Dan Cohen, the program took the spotlight with the 2014 documentary, “Alive Inside: A Story of Music & Memory,” and was recently endorsed by legendary singer-songwriter Carole King. With the therapeutic effects of personalized music, many people living with ADRD become more aware, animated, and “alive inside.”
Senior loneliness is not only a pressing social issue, it’s also a major health risk. A groundbreaking study links social isolation with a higher risk of death in adults aged 52 and older.It’s been found to be as physically harmful as smoking 15 cigarettes a day and contributes to cognitive decline, including the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD).
To fight the loneliness epidemic – experienced by more than 40 percent of seniors throughout the nation – innovators in senior care are taking new approaches. They’re helping residents to seek rewarding activities, make robust social connections, and find a renewed sense of purpose.
Leading senior care providers are constantly looking for the latest in care innovations to serve their community. An increasingly safe and popular option is aromatherapy – the practice of using essential oils from plants to address health challenges and support overall wellness.
In addition to being a nonpharmacological approach to meet behavioral health issues experienced by seniors in living communities, aromatherapy programs have helped in reducing medications for pain, anxiety, and depression, as well as improving sleep and lowering fall rates.