Jul 8, 2024 |

Gifts for Someone with Dementia

Appropriate gifts for a loved one with dementia

Deciding on a gift for someone living with dementia can be a bit of a challenge. You want to give your loved one something they will enjoy, but it can be difficult to think of things that are appropriate for changing abilities.

This guide from Montgomery Place: Senior Living Community in Chicago will give you gift ideas for those in the early, middle, and late stages of dementia.

What to Know When Choosing Gifts for a Loved One with Dementia

No matter the stage or type of dementia your loved one is experiencing, you want to choose a gift that will bring joy while supporting their quality of life. These gifting guidelines should help make shopping for the right gift easier.

  • Be respectful: Select gifts that are age-appropriate. Someone diagnosed with dementia would most likely be offended if given something geared toward a child. An easy-to-care-for plant or a blanket.

  • Consider lifelong interests: Think about the hobbies, careers, or specific interests your loved one had prior to the onset of dementia. Someone who enjoyed going to football games would be thrilled to receive a signed ball.

  • Focus on engagement: Gifts that prompt interaction provide your loved one with an activity and have therapeutic value. Sensory stimulation in the form of a visual, tactile, or auditory experience may help activate memory or improve cognition for some who have Alzheimer's disease. A music player with headphones, puzzles, or a digital photo frame are good gift ideas to consider.

Before shopping, check with other family members or caregivers to learn more about current interests. This will help ensure that your gift is well received.

Gift Ideas Depending on the Stage of Dementia

At any stage of dementia, a gift that brings your loved one enjoyment is the goal. A stage-appropriate gift will be safe and easy to use. 

Early-stage dementia

In early-stage dementia, cognitive impairment is usually mild. At this point, gifts can be similar to what they were given in the past. Consider asking your loved one for a suggestion, because it's not too late to get feedback on passions they have right now. A scrapbook or memory book that you put together yourself can bring hours of enjoyment and a connection to fun times as the memory begins to fade.

Middle-stage dementia

As symptoms become more pronounced, gifts should begin to focus on safety, navigating living space, and minimizing disruption. An easy-to-see clock with time, date, and day of the week is helpful, as is a talking alarm clock that can remind your loved one to take medication. Motion-detecting night lights can help with orientation and avoiding falls.

Late-stage dementia

As dementia becomes advanced, gift selection can be more difficult. Gifts that provide sensory stimulation, such as adult coloring books, robotic pets, and fidget toys, can offer hours of entertainment and comfort. 

Time spent with your loved one is a gift that will be appreciated at any stage. Watching a movie together or sitting outdoors in nature can be excellent for both of you. 

The Gift of Security

Keeping your loved one safe and secure during the changing stages of dementia is one of the best gifts you can give.

With four levels of care, Montgomery Place: Senior Living Community in Chicago provides a social and stress-free environment for adults who require some level of assistance.

We can offer you or your family member a lifestyle of dignity, focusing on safety, mobility, and happiness.

Contact us today for more information or to schedule a tour.

Featured Image: Ground Picture / Shutterstock

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