Dementia: Organising Our Days

This post has been lifted from a helpful Web Site and edited slightly.  I intend to use it as a guideline for planning our days, as I encourage others to help us review how our journey is progressing.  It is particularly pertinent after a rather challenging week:

Organising Your Day

Remember to make time for yourself, or include the person with dementia in activities that you enjoy – for example, taking a daily walk.

A person with dementia will eventually need a caregiver’s assistance to organize the day. Structured and pleasant activities can often reduce agitation and improve mood. Planning activities for a person with dementia works best when you continually explore, experiment and adjust.

Before making a plan, consider:

  • The person’s likes, dislikes, strengths, abilities and interests
  • How the person used to structure his or her day
  • What times of day the person functions best
  • Ample time for meals, bathing and dressing
  • Regular times for waking up and going to bed (especially helpful if the person with dementia experiences sleep issues or sundowning)

Make sure to allow for flexibility within your daily routine for spontaneous activities.

As dementia progresses, the abilities of a person concerned will change. With creativity, flexibility and problem solving, you’ll be able to adapt your daily routine to support these changes.

Checklist of Daily Activities to Consider

  • Household chores
  • Mealtimes
  • Personal care
  • Creative activities (music, art, crafts)
  • Intellectual (reading, puzzles)
  • Physical
  • Social
  • Spiritual

When thinking about how to organize the day, consider:

  • What activities work best? Which don’t? Why? (Keep in mind that the success of an activity can vary from day-to-day.)
  • Are there times when there is too much going on or too little to do?
  • Are spontaneous activities enjoyable and easily completed?

Don’t be concerned about filling every minute with an activity. The person with dementia needs a balance of activity and rest, and may need more frequent breaks and varied tasks.

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