What is reminiscence in dementia care?
Reminiscence means looking back at the past and remembering happy memories. Reminiscence therapy is often used in the course of Memory Care for people with dementia as it helps to create positive feelings. One of the biggest benefits of reminiscence is that it can utilise all the senses to help individuals remember events, people and places from their past lives.
Reminiscence activities can be really simple, which makes them easy to do. For example, simply taking to someone about their past, or telling stories about past events, can help individuals with dementia feel less isolated and more connected to the present.
What are the benefits of reminiscence for someone with dementia?
For individuals with dementia or Alzheimer’s, it is very common for short term memory and recent memories to be affected first. This can make day-to-day interactions difficult and, in some cases, stressful for both the individual and their family.
Sharing memories from the past through reminiscence therapy can help engage individuals with memories they still possess. Looking back on times gone by can have a calming effect on those living with dementia, as well as provide relief from boredom and symptoms of depression.
How do you reminisce with a person with dementia?
Reminiscence therapy is fairly straightforward. Asking simple questions of an individual can be enough to evoke happy memories and start a conversation about their past. Alongside this, photographs, keepsakes,old films and music can be used to kick start their memory and encourage someone to look back on the past fondly.
Reminiscence can be effectively be used to alleviate stress and/or distract a person who is upset. However, it’s important to remember that this might not always be the case. While looking back on the past has the potential to bring back happy, peaceful memories, it can also stir up painful or sad memories. Therefore, being sensitive to the person’s reactions in the event that this does happen is very important.
Memory Care from Lovett Care
At Lovett Care we provide specialist memory care and dementia care to individuals over 65 years at our care homes in Staffordshire and Cheshire. Reminiscence forms a part of the care we provide on a day-to-day basis, and our staff have extensive experience in supporting individuals with dementia and Alzheimer’s. To find out more about our care services, including residential, day, respite and memory care, contact our team today.