Keeping your mind and body active

Castleview residents were being creative last month when taking part in their regular art therapy class. Elderly residents and residents with dementia can use art as a therapeutic way to express themselves. Dementia sufferers may find it difficult to communicate through conversation with their thoughts and fears not being shared, feeling agitated and struggling with loss of memory and a feeling of being disconnected from the world. It has been proven that artistic abilities are in fact preserved, which is why it is so important for us to provide our residents with the facilities they need. Giving a person with dementia the opportunity to relax in a safe and supportive environment is what we offer at Ascot Care. Art (along with music, which our residents also take part in) can open a gateway for dementia patients to express themselves and interact, improve their quality of life, enhance their creative mind and reroute communication pathways. Above are pictures of residents of Castleview care home in their art class.

Along with art therapy, pet therapy is also a way to help people with Alzheimer’s and dementia. Being in the presence of animals can provide companionship and also reduces anxiety and depression, which are symptoms Alzheimer and dementia sufferers will be feeling. Research has shown having pets around us can lower blood pressure and heart rate, reducing stress and boosting the feel good factor. The mood of a dementia patient can quickly change from being emotionless and lifeless to a state of happiness and joy when a pet enters the room, this can be due to many reasons, one of which may be the pet has triggered happy memories. This is why we have regular visits from groups offering pet therapy, you can see above residents of Castleview care home feeling happy and relaxed in the company of the lovely dog that was brought along to see them.

Exercise is very important for all ages and can especially help dementia sufferers. People with dementia should try to find a form of exercise suitable for their ability level, anything from walking to aerobics. Exercise will help dementia sufferers as it can reduce depression, improve sleep, increase strength, flexibility and circulation. Regular exercise will give better balance reducing the risk of falls and pain in day to day life, along with boosting mood and self esteem. Dementia can leave people feeling differently at different times of the day and exercise can help to manage challenging behaviour like agitation, sundowning and disrupted sleep. Residents of Springfield Lodge shown in the above and below pictures, have taken part in the Dementia Friendly monthly day held at Jubilee Hall in West Rainton, where the theme this month was exercise. Our residents enjoyed the day and we encourage them to keep up the good work.

Along with therapies such as art, music, pets and exercising, keeping the mind active in any way is recommended. Back in February Castleview residents had fun on their Pancake and crafts day where you can see below some of the artistic work created.

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