One of the major problems faced by those suffering from Alzheimer's disease or any of the dementias is the periods of loneliness, boredom and frustration.

The following few articles will give you some ideas of the things that you can do to actively do – a starting point as it were to occupy the odd moment.

Outdoor Activities

It is always nice to be outside for a change of scenery and even with our weather there is always something to do and they don't all have to be expensive. Starting with the cheapest activities first it is always nice to go for a walk exploring old buildings or churches, or just enjoying the countryside – bird watching, walking a dog, throwing a ball etc. or the sea side – walking on the beach, sitting in the sun, eating an ice cream or just spending time with family and friends. You can then do all the things that used to thrill you as a child that you haven't done for years and fly kites, make snowmen, collect shells etc. – none of which cost anything.

It is possible to visit libraries to look for books or CDs, get involved with shopping trips (often just being asked to participate or for an opinion makes everyone feel worthwhile). Take bus journeys through town to visit places from the past or historical bus tours are usually a good source of interest. You can visit aquariums, the zoo, museums, art galleries and even “pick you own” fruit and vegetables farms provide a day out (and you have something to show for it at the end!).

Cooking Activities

As a man, I have been told (and I find this hard to believe) there is always something to do in the kitchen!

Activities can include peeling vegetables or potatoes (especially the ones you have grown), shelling peas or beans, shelling nuts, preparing salads or fruit salads, decorating cakes, mixing the ingredients for cakes, bread etc., making jams, chutneys or sauces, pickling or preserving. The list is endless as long as there is a little supervision and the ingredients are placed to hand nearby, helping out in the kitchen can prove stimulating, productive and worthwhile.

Activities To Help Around The Home

There are many activities and chores that can be done around the home that will allow people to feel involved and wanted. There are for example always things that need sorting out whether these are old newspapers and magazines to be put in the recycling, washing jars and bottles to recycle, sorting out socks into pairs as they come out of the washing machine or sorting out playing cards, buttons, screws, nuts and bolts, folding clothes, writing name tags, signing letters or bills.

If that wasn't enough to get you thinking of your own ideas there is also cutting out adverts or coupons, winding up string, cotton onto reels, wool into balls, polishing things (usually it is better if they are not fragile, valuable or sentimental so things like large brass ornaments are ideal). The list goes on and on and it is really only limited by your own imagination!

In the early stages of dementia the use of memory joggers or prompters may be helpful so that things remain as normal as possible. There are many different ways in which you can improve both cognition and memory by the use of aids, but the best types to think about should not only be clear to use, easy to carry out or perform and actually help to jog the memory and /or minimise confusion.

I would recommend that you read through the following list of ideas and see which ones may be applicable to your unique circumstance.

Remember that every case is individual and that people experience memory difficulties in different ways and therefore not all of these tips may be appropriate to your situation.

Watch out for my future articles and I will share some further ideas with you – or grab a copy of my book The Alzheimer’s Alternative to learn more.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Steffan H. Abel D.C. has been involved in Chiropractic and healthcare research for over 20 years. He has run his own successful practice in the north of England for the last 19 years. During which time he has treated over 10,000 patients and given over 100,000 treatments. He has lectured and taught extensively in both Europe and America to students, chiropractors and medical doctors.

He has studied Hypnotherapy, N.L.P. and qualified as a Life Coach. He has also studied various Chiropractic-based treatments (gaining a M.Sc. in post graduate Clinical Chiropractic in 2003) as well as energy therapies such as Seichem and Reiki. In 2001 he became a Fellow of the College of Chiropractors and a Fellow of the Association of Osteomyology and in 2007 became a Fellow of the European Academy of Chiropractic.

In his spare time he spends between 15 and 25 hours per week researching all areas of “alternative” and allopathic healthcare in order to bring the best advice to his patients through his practice and writing and has just finished his latest book The Alzheimer's Alternative ( When not working he is to be found enjoying life with Sue, his partner, – whom he loves tremendously!

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