Christmas is an exciting and enjoyable time for all the family – however, if you are suffering from Dementia, it can be a confusing and perhaps scary time of the year.

Living with dementia is hard for the person, as well as the family and loved ones, however, there are some ways to make it easier for those living with the disease. Here we have a few top tips to make Christmas a family-friendly occasion – for all.

Slowly Slowly

Gradually introduce decorations and changes around the house for the festive period so that people are not too overwhelmed by the sudden changes, which they might find upsetting. Asking your loved one to help too is encouraged.

Bring out the Old

Make a playlist featuring some old songs that you think your loved one will like. Maybe a favourite artist or band from their youth. Or some classic Christmas songs that can be enjoyed. Music often has a positive effect on those suffering from dementia, and the benefits of listening to music are well known. Regular use of music could also work as a long term plan to help with mental health and lift moods.

Remember the past

Talk about the past – people that are no longer around and family memories. The past is there for us all and it shouldn’t be ignored and it is important to remember those years gone by. Encourage your loved ones – with and without dementia – to talk about the past, their memories of Christmases and years gone by as well as family memories.

Shelter and Safety

Christmas can be very overwhelming for everyone – make sure where possible there is a quiet and safe space for loved ones to spend time in. A place that isn’t decorated and is quiet for them to gather their thoughts and have some space and time away from the festivities.