Reminiscing Over Holiday Memories Can Improve Memory Care in Seniors

Making new holiday memories is fun for all. The holiday’s are full of happiness centered around the family table as family members are reminiscing and celebrating a cheerful time. However, the holiday’s can also create sadness and stress brought on by the current COVID-19 health crisis. Although the safest option is to avoid in-person gatherings, there are many benefits to using technology to help your loved one reminisce over past holiday memories and  restore the mind as well as recapture moments of joy.

If your loved one is suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s and in a memory care facility, these memory care practices may be needed to get them more involved. 

What is Memory Care?

Memory care is a form of senior living that provides intensive, specialized care for people with memory issues. Many nursing homes or skilled nursing facilities have created specialized memory care units to help individuals with dementia or Alzheimer’s work through their memory issues. Memory care is a growing segment of the senior housing market, with the number of units rising 55% from 2013 to 2018, according to Seniors Housing Business magazine.

The Benefits of Reliving Holiday Memories

Nearly 9% of American adults aged 65 and older meet criteria for dementia. Through the process of reminiscence therapy, seniors are encouraged to discuss memories from their past to engage the mind and encourage recollection. This evidence-based approach is encouraged to be done at any phase to connect with loved ones with impaired memory and dementia. 

Family members can act as informal caregivers for loved ones who develop memory issues. Reminiscence therapy techniques typically involve family members asking their loved-one about past happy memories. During the holidays it can be a perfect time to engage in these activities and bring forth memories and positive experiences. Studies show that these techniques help improve quality of life and communication mood

How Technology is Saving Seniors with Memory Loss?

In the time of COVID-19, technology can still play an important role in communicating with your loved one and using reminiscence therapy virtually. Taking the stress out of the holidays and readjusting expectations can still bring happiness and cheerful memories to the forefront. Arranging a video call through Zoom or Skype can allow everyone to gather virtually. Having advanced notice, the entire family will help everyone stay safe and still be able to impact your loved ones suffering from memory care issues. The entire family can play a trivia game, sing carols, or share pictures from past gatherings. 

Cross talk or simultaneous conversations can be challenging for people living with dementia, so consider this when planning. Family can help with communication by being patient, not interrupting or correcting, and giving the person time to finish his or her thoughts. Slow down and take time exploring past holiday memories. With the help of facility managers and skilled nurses, your family can enjoy making new memories while reliving the old.

Recover with South Coast Post Acute

At South Coast Post Acute, our experienced healthcare staff and memory care professionals help your loved one engage the mind through specialized exercises. Our memory care services are designed to engage the mind of seniors with dementia in a safe and healthy environment. To achieve this, we focus on three aspects of care: diet, customized medications, and effective care techniques. Contact us today and learn why we’re Southern California’s rehabilitation center of choice in Santa Ana.

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