Recently one of our clients inspired us to launch an especial service specifically designed for dementia cases. It is a Daily Word-Puzzle with related words that we create using a third party software. The objective is to exercise the brain and memory through a challenging word puzzle with specific words of any particular event related to a specific context to the patient.
The operation is very simple. A member of the family send us via email from 5 to 20 words of any related topic and we build through a third party software, a word puzzle with these words. (We can add several levels of difficulties depending on the level of the cognitive decline).
The benefits of puzzles are amazing. These exercises stimulate both sides of the brain. The right, focuses on creativity and intuitive thought, while the left, is focused on logic and order promoting less decline of cognitive functioning
Puzzles also improve memory and visual perception. When you put together a puzzle, your eyes are constantly scanning for a piece that matches a specific subject, word or shape. This not only improves visual recognition (which often declines with dementia) but strengthens short-term memory as well. Word puzzles reinforce memory to strengthen connections between brain cells and build new relationships between subjects. This is particularly important because Seniors with memory loss often have trouble interacting with those around them, especially as their symptoms progress.
Activities that exercise both sides of the brain also encourage the mental state foundation of the meditation stage. (To take out thoughts from past -Fear, trauma, distress and Future,- Anxiety). This state lets the senior feel calm and relaxed and will enable to be in a more Rest & Digest mood promoting healing, lowering inflammation, pain, blood pressure and all the benefits of this key stage,
Relaxation, Rest & Digest, Meditation and the fact that the senior is completing a task, such as solving one piece or an entire puzzle, releases dopamine in the brain. In addition to the feel-good effect, Dopamine also has the added benefits of improving motor skills, concentration, optimism, confidence and recollection – all beneficial to those with memory loss!
Finally, it is important to have the awareness that for people with dementia, feeling a sense of accomplishment can be rare. Their disease may limit them from doing the kinds of tasks they used to do with ease. A simple project, such as finishing a puzzle, can give them a big boost in pride and sense of purpose.
Please ask for your daily WordPuzzle. Share with experiences of your beloved, names of family members, special events and all the situations that might challenge the memory of your loved one. We will build the word puzzle and print it to be released through the caregiver or to your email. The benefits are overwhelming and the well being of your senior will the retribution and the reward we need at Assisting Hands.