Dementia Games

Having a client or loved one with dementia or Alzheimer's can often make caregivers feel helpless, but we may be able to do more to keep loved ones healthy than we think.

There is no cure for dementia or Alzheimer's yet, but more and more people believe that by making some simple changes we can help to ward off dementia and Alzheimer's in our loved ones and ourselves. Along with physical exercise and caffeine, doing some simple brain exercises could make a big difference.

One great way to exercise the brain is with games. I have put together a list of a few game ideas that are geared towards the elderly and those that are already struggling with dementia. They are familiar, easy to learn and have few steps

Memory or Concentration - a card game in which all of the cards are laid face down on a surface and two cards are flipped face up over each turn. The object of the game is to turn over pairs of matching cards. Concentration can be played with any number of players or as solitaire. You could also use loved ones photos if you had double prints.

Fill in the Blanks - Difficulty with word retrieval is an early indicator of memory loss. However, word games can be fun and easy when the person with dementia is asked to complete familiar phrases, words or even parts of words such as the following:
Easy come, easy ___
Somewhere over the Rain_____
Here comes the bride, here comes the _______

Sorting games - Sort objects by color, shape or design. This could include laundry, cards, pictures or anything that is of interest to the person, like a hobby they used to enjoy.  For instance if they collected baseball cards, have them put them into categories.

If you client or loved one has basic computer skills, like clicking and dragging there are a couple online games that are great.

Fishdom  - This is a match 3 game was my Granny's favorite.  She would play this game for hours every day.  She even asked me once if I thought she could be addicted!  It is the only game on the list that isnt free, but for $14 its is well worth the price.  It has bright pretty colors and an endless game option, so you can literally play it forever.  One of my favorite things about this game is the relaxing background music.

Jigidi  - This is a great, simple jigsaw puzzle site.  Whats cool about this site is you can upload your own photos of loved ones or places your client or loved one has been to make it even more fun.

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