Since 2010 Active Minds have been researching and developing activities to improve the quality of life for people living with dementia. Our mission is and will continue to be, to create positive, mindfully designed, person-centred activity products and games to help people lead active lives.
Our award winning Complete Kit contains a wide range of evidence-based and tested resources specifically designed to engage people with dementia. Supporting all members of the team to deliver spontaneous activity sessions and evidence person centered care.
Active Minds is a company built on years of research and personal experience. A close working relationship with Barchester Healthcare and Kingston University has allowed Active Minds to bring together knowledge, experience and research to create some unique activity products and games designed for people with dementia.
Active Minds continually measures its social impact to establish the benefits our activity products are having on the lives of those living with dementia. We use this data to continue making improvements to our products and development process.See our reports
91% of carers felt products improved well-being
91% of carers felt products reduced frustration
86% would recommend Active Minds products
103,300 people have seen an improvement in their quality of life so far
Read our latest news and updates around the topic of dementia
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Therapeutic activities provide a dynamic way to focus on an individual’s personal interests and memories, and are a great way to help keep someone both mentally and physically active. Choosing ac...
Written by Ryan on Friday the 3rd of November 2017.
Living with dementia can be extremely stressful at times, especially when one begins to notice lapses in memory or changes in behaviour. So, taking some time out to relax and de-stress can be incredibly beneficial for anyone living with dementia, allowing a moment to just breath, away from the general chaos of everyday life. Relaxation techniques will help reduce stress, agitation and any anger a person with dementia may feel.
It seems simple enough but taking time to practise deep breathing will help reduce tension, shortness of breath and anxiety. As with all relaxation techniques, find a quiet, calming place away from distractions. Encourage a person living with dementia to sit straight with one hand on their chest and one on their stomach. Tell them to breath in slowly to the count of 3 through their nose, feeling their stomach expand as they inhale but their chest staying relatively still. They should then breath out slowly through the mouth to the count of 5. Continue this relaxing breathing technique for about 10 minutes.
Yoga not only focuses on the body, helping strengthen muscles through a series of stretches and poses, but it also concentrates on deep breathing techniques, which is a fantastic way to relieve stress and tension. Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to be an Olympic gymnast to undertake yoga, and in fact there are a number of yoga classes specifically for older people or people with dementia. There are also chair yoga classes available on YouTube, that take you through a gentle, seated yoga class, step by step.
Mindfulness has become very popular in recent years, with many people believing it is one of the best relaxation techniques out there. The premise is simple; focus on the present, try not to let what has happened in the past or may occur in the future worry you. This idea works well for people who are living with dementia, as they may become distressed and agitated thinking about what the future holds, or worrying that they cannot remember what happened yesterday.
Obviously, this thought process is much easier said than done, so there are a number of courses that can be attended, specifically for people with dementia. However, you can encourage a loved one with dementia to try their own mindfulness by focusing their attention on a single object, such as a flickering candle.
This is similar to meditation, but allows the person to focus on a place that makes them feel relaxed, where they can de-stress and release any tension or anxiety they may be feeling. Ask a person with dementia to either lie or sit down, whatever they find most comfortable. Then ask them to imagine a restful place. This could be a beach or a country field, whatever makes them feel relaxed. Ask them to imagine walking around this place, what do they see? What do they hear? What colours do they see? How are they feeling? Happy? Relaxed? Once you have spent about 5 to 10 minutes on this guided visualisation, ask them to bring themselves back to the present room and open their eyes. This technique should help a person feel relaxed, calm and serene.