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The caregiver's toolbox

The Caregiver’s Activity Tool Box is a blessing to all. Frequently have a ‘tool box’ which aids them when there is a moment that requires some activity to slow down unwanted actions or speeds up a dull time which will lead to possible unwanted actions. Most caregiver’s have them, although not in the traditional sense. The activities are frequently in the form of thoughts, tried and true conversation topics, walks which give into relaxation and peace, music which leads to good memories.

Visitors need to have some access to these activities; however that is much simpler than said than done. While a fulltime caregiver may know what will work 90% of the time, infrequent visitors will not. Just having a thought or limited guidance from the fulltime person will sometimes help and other times not. Visitors that have known the person for an extended period of time will perhaps have some activities of their own, such as conversations regarding ball games or book clubs reads from the shared past with the person. Many visitors will be caught unawares by this situation.

Should we find ourselves in the situation of what to do to pass the time, without a common activity in the past; many will have a short conversation and then sit and share a quiet moment. This is where family and close friends come in. Putting together a photo album of pictures spanning the adult years is always a good activity (both can have part of the activity); new on the scene – put together a small scrap book which has pictures and articles about careers, travels or past activities that are common to both of the people and of course always talk of family members and foods specific to a region or ethnicity will help provided a pleasant afternoon.

Listed below are a few research areas for hints or specifics regarding activities. It is frequently, a good idea to make some of the activities age specific for the interaction of children with the person. These listed websites you may find of some help. And please keep in mind that not all dementia is Alzheimer’s but all Alzheimer’s has a dementia component: www.ezinearticles.com ; www.recreationtherapy.com, and always the standby of www.alz.org for information.