Memory puzzles: Are there puzzles or other activities specifically designed for people with dementia?

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Are there puzzles or other activities specifically designed for people with dementia?

Question

My husband has recently been diagnosed with middle-stage Alzheimer’s. I’ve heard that puzzles can ease some of the symptoms of the condition. Do you know of any puzzles or other activities specifically designed for people with dementia or Alzheimer’s?

Our answer

It's great to hear that you are looking for ways to keep your husband's mind stimulated. Below are direct links to some tools designed to engage people with Dementia and Alzheimer's:

  • Around the Bird Feeder Puzzle for Dementia and Alzheimer’s (at amazon.ca) is a 35-piece, age-appropriate puzzle that has been tested with people at various stages of dementia. This product costs about $25 (Cdn), plus a shipping fee. 
  • Lace Away Dexterity Activity Tray (at The Alzheimer’s Store Canada) is an activity designed to help people with early- and middle-stage dementia maintain fine motor movement and hand-eye coordination. This product costs about $50 (Cdn), plus a shipping fee. 

If you and your husband use a smartphone or tablet, you may also be interested in exploring the apps listed below: 

For Apple devices:

  • Let’s Create! Pottery is a free app that allows users to create pottery on their smartphone or tablet by spinning a virtual pottery wheel. This app, which was included as one of the great apps for people with dementia or Alzheimer's by the Seniors Directory, is fun to play, especially for older adults who have always enjoyed creative tasks.
  • MindMate – Healthy Aging is a free app that supports individuals with cognitive decline by offering “brain workouts,” which are scientifically supported games designed to challenge the four core cognitive abilities.  

For Android devices:

  • Let’s Create! Pottery is a free app that allows users to create pottery on their smartphone or tablet by spinning a virtual pottery wheel. This app, which was included as one of the great apps for people with dementia or Alzheimer's by the Seniors Directory, is fun to play, especially for older adults who have always enjoyed creative tasks.

Additionally, Alzheimers.net has published an online article called 10 Stimulating Activities for Alzheimer's Patients, which lists a number of appropriate leisure activities for people with dementia. 

 

Some technologies and devices may require an in-person assessment. Speak with your health care provider for additional information and support.

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