Written by Active Minds on Monday the 9th of March 2020.
Celebrating Mother’s Day if your mother or grandmother has dementia can be incredibly beneficial for all involved. It can be a perfect opportunity to reflect and reminisce together and be thankful for both the person and your wider family. Although celebrating may seem emotionally challenging, making the time to take part in some Mother’s Day activities together can help the person living with dementia feel appreciated and involved.
Days such as Mother’s Day can bring with them traditions and memories of the past which can be brilliant for those living with dementia; taking part in familiar traditions can help to spark memories and conversations whilst encouraging social connections. Pairing these traditions with activities such as arts and crafts can be a great way to encourage involvement.
Art therapy has been shown to be highly beneficial for someone living with dementia, therefore here we will discuss five fantastic arts and crafts activities which would be perfect for Mother’s Day.
Flowers are a favoured tradition on Mother’s Day, and as such creating a flower arrangement together can be a great way to incorporate this lovely activity with a familiar tradition. This can be especially enjoyable if your mother or grandmother likes to garden as you could pick some flowers together and arrange them. Flower arranging can also be a highly sensory activity with the scents and colours of the flowers along with the feel of the ribbon when putting the arrangement together; sensory activities have been shown to be very beneficial for someone living with dementia.
As with flower arranging, making greetings cards on Mother’s Day is a great way to involve traditions whilst enjoying some quality time together. You can spend the time creating a beautiful handmade Mother’s Day card for your mother or grandmother and they can also get involved with the creation; art therapy is a great way to spark conversation as well as being a relaxing activity for those living with dementia. You’ll also be left with a beautiful finished product and a sense of accomplishment for the both of you.
If your mother or grandmother loves to bake, this will be a great activity to get involved in. Baking can be extremely therapeutic, and if it is an activity the person with dementia has enjoyed in the past, it will likely aid in reminiscence. The familiar actions of mixing and rolling can also be very relaxing. Best of all, you’ll have some tasty treats to enjoy together at the end!
One of the great things about traditions is that you will likely have many photos of them over the years. Mother’s Day is a great day to dig up some of your old photos; not just of previous Mother’s Days but of general happy memories you have with your mother or grandmother. You can then sit together looking through these photos and create a beautiful Mother’s Day scrapbook which your loved one can keep and look through at their leisure. Looking through past photos can help spark memories for someone living with dementia and presents an opportunity to start conversations and build social connections.
Mother’s Day is a great time to have a movie day with your mother or grandmother; take her favourite film and enjoy the time watching it together. As with any of the activities mentioned, this is a great way to encourage conversation and even spark memories of previous times they have enjoyed this specific movie.
Whatever you choose to do this Mother’s Day, it is important to use the day to reflect and think of the good times you and your mother or grandmother have had over time rather than focus on the negatives. Embrace the traditions of Mother’s Day and get involved with some activities to remind both of you how special the day can be. Remember to be flexible with the activities based on mood and responsiveness and don’t overly encourage activities which the person may not be enjoying as much.