Nov 8, 2022 | Alzheimer's and Dementia

How are holiday memories made?

For a lot of people, the joy of family gatherings – filled with stories, laughter, and the warmth of sharing food and time – are enough to knit together treasured moments. Others celebrate differently, but in the end, folks reminisce about “the good times”.

The reality for some is that holidays are not the same because caring for a loved one with dementia is challenging. This type of situation requires an adjustment on everyone’s behalf. But certainly, new memories can be made while rekindling bygone moments. 

To enjoy the holiday while reducing stress, we encourage you with the following caregiver tips: 

Keep the mood light and the spirits up

  • Tone down decorations 
  • Avoid blinking lights or large decorative displays 

Host a small gathering 

  • Aim to keep celebrations quiet and relaxed

Think of the Loved One 

  • Explain in advance what is happening, and why 
  • Make sure guests are informed in advance of the situation
  • Play familiar or favorite holiday music 

Be considerate of their feelings 

  • Ask them what they would like at the gathering 
  • Give them a task that can be easily competed

Be Aware of Timing 

  • Plan a gathering at the best time of day for the person with dementia
  • Keep daily routines in place as much as possible

Provide a quiet place 

  • If you are having guests over, provide a quiet place for the person with dementia to have time alone or to visit with one person at a time

Bring the holiday to your loved one 

  • If it’s possible 
  • Bring the meal already prepared  
  • Consider a smaller group  

Relax and Make it Simple 

We all like our routines, and it can be hard to adopt new traditions. A holiday gathering can be successful with careful and advanced planning. A pleasant event can happen when expectations are modified and communicated to all. Different perhaps – but memories forged anew – with special remembrances enjoyed once again.

If you or someone you care about needs additional support to help cope, The Option Group is here to help. Please contact our professional care management team for assistance.

About The Option Group: Founded in 2010, The Option Group’s compassionate team of experienced Certified Life Care Managers serves families, their loved ones, medical professionals, and professional family advisors in Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. The firm understands the challenges of caring for an individual who needs assistance due to aging, dementia, disability, or serious illness. Their skilled providers possess over 100 years of combined experience navigating the healthcare maze and accessing hundreds of quality resources. The Option Group helps families spend quality time with their loved ones, providing clear choices that lead to better care. For more information, visit www.theoptiongroup.net or call 410-667-0266 (MD) or 717-287-9900 / 610-885-8899/ 215-896-6756 (PA) / or 302-858-6449 (DE).