Take Easter 2021 as an opportunity to brighten the day and mind of an elderly resident, friend or family member living with dementia.
Becoming involved in festive activities can stimulate positive memories, encourage engagement and self-expression.
For those caring for people with mental health conditions like Dementia, it can be challenging to find activities that are stimulating, but not overwhelming. That is why we have compiled a list of our favourite Easter activities for people with Dementia.
6 Easter Ideas for Seniors with Dementia
We spoke with our clinicians working in aged care facilities and these are some of their favourite Easter ideas for their residents and seniors living with dementia:
Painting and dying eggs
Art therapy stimulates the brain, it provides an opportunity for self-expression away from verbal communication, and encourages the painter to engage. While colours and lines stimulate cognition, painting also requires some level of hand-eye coordination, concentration, and creativity to participate. Painting hard boiled eggs with paint and dye requires little time and still gives them that same feeling of accomplishment and independency.
Distributing Easter Eggs
Whether they have homemade baskets on their room doors that residents can distribute eggs into or there are grandchildren visiting who would enjoy a chocolate treat from a resident, this is an Easter activity that a person living with dementia can perform with the right support. Helping with socialisation, following instructions and becoming engaged, this activity can also trigger positive memories.
More Easter crafts for seniors
From making bunny ears to gift baskets to Easter cards. Depending on your residents’ cognitive level these crafts can be fun, festive and stimulating. People living with dementia often struggle with self-expression, a feeling of being trapped and are unable to communicate their emotions. Simple and safer Easter arts and crafts can be therapeutic for people exhibiting dementia symptoms.
Staff and visitors to wear Easter props
The bright colourful additions of Easter props can be fun for residents and staff, whether it’s bunny ears, a large stuffed carrot, a homemade Easter selfie frame or Easter masks. Residents can also join in on the dress up and if you have a polaroid camera (or a smartphone) you can set up a little photo booth. A great way to make a happy memory for residents and their relatives.
Easter church services
For many who grew up spending Easter in church services, having the option to attend a church service in their facility or attend mass at a local church can be a comfort. While the commercial Easter activities are a great opportunity to stimulate and engage residents, for many the opportunity to express their faith during this religious holiday is cardinal.
A sometimes challenging but rewarding activity for people with dementia is to have them recall memories. This is a form of reminiscence therapy and can help reduce stress for people with dementia as they recall positive memories. Have your residents share what they do with their family for Easter and why Easter is important to them.
If you enjoyed our Easter activities, then check out our suggestions for Christmas. Click here to read 12 ways you can bring cheer to your facility this Christmas.
Our entire team at Vivir Healthcare wish all our clinicians, residents, support staff, clients and readers a happy, safe and memorable holidays this Easter long weekend.