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Taking a Cue from Montessori Programs in Your Elder Care Plan for Seniors with Dementia

Elder Care in Lakewood, CO

Elder Care in Lakewood COMany people have heard of Montessori programs and the amazing benefits that this type of schooling can offer to children. Usually presented as an alternative to traditional schools, the principles of Montessori schooling rely on the concept that learning should be an experiential thing rather than a structured abstract approach. Students are encouraged to explore concepts through real world applications and hands-on learning activities, such as stacking blocks to learn mathematics or strengthening their motor skills through activities such as threading eyes in pieces of wood with ribbons or learning the concept of volume and mass by pouring water from one container to another. While these are truly amazing ways to encourage children to learn through the application of concrete and abstract concepts to the world around them, you can also utilize these techniques and principles to enhance your elder care journey with your seniors.

Developing a care approach for elderly adults who are coping with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia can be stressful and confusing. You know that you need to modify your care efforts to address your parents’ changing cognitive and physical functioning as they progress through the stages of the disease, but you also want to promote the highest level of independence, autonomy, health, wellbeing, and happiness as possible. Taking a cue from Montessori programs within your elder care efforts involves encouraging seniors to do tasks that will trigger memories and work on their fundamental cognitive abilities while also providing support and comfort. This can be a highly effective way of helping seniors to relearn tasks that may have been lost due to their dementia so that they can hang on to more of their independence. These activities also stimulate the mind so that they do not suffer from boredom that can result in anxiety, stress, and even combative behaviors.

Some ways that you and your parents’ home care provider can utilize the Montessori method to enhance your elder care efforts for seniors with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia include:

• Fill a container with dry rice and bury a variety of small items. Give the senior a slotted spoon and encourage her to use it to find the items. This will promote self-feeding as well as the excitement of discovering new items

• Simulate household tasks or have her involved in actual tasks such as folding towels and matching socks. These encourage cognitive and physical activity as well as triggering memories of when she used to do these tasks for herself and her family when she was younger. Matching socks is also a wonderful way to work out their minds as they have to identify the patterns and ensure they coordinate

• Many elderly adults dealing with the advanced stages of dementia find it comforting to “take care” of baby dolls. Set up a table with dolls, doll diapers, and doll clothes, and encourage them to dress the dolls and cuddle with them.

Source
http://www.alzheimers.net/2014-05-27/montessori-method-dementia/
https://www.alz.org/national/documents/aoagrant_tools_montessori.pdf

If you or an aging loved one are considering in-home elder care in Lakewood, CO, please call and speak to the caring staff at Talem Home Care.  Call today at (720) 724-9440.