Holistic therapies are on the rise for seniors with memory loss. In order to manage symptoms of memory loss and benefit seniors without the use of medicine, many leading memory care communities turn to holistic therapy. These therapies, which can include music, art and dance, have shown to engage seniors and enhance their lives. Reminiscence therapy is no exception and also greatly benefits seniors with memory loss.

According to Cydney Hansen, Marketing Director, at CountryHouse, a memory care community in Granite Bay, CA, reminiscence therapy is a vastly used tool in memory care. “Reminiscence therapy has been around for years, whether it’s been realized or not,” she states. “Reminiscence therapy has to do solely with bringing up positive memories and experiences from your loved one’s past, whether in story form, casual conversation or by photographs and other mementos. While this seems simple, it’s an extremely effective way to engage your loved one with memory loss.”

Reminiscence Therapy Can Benefit Seniors with Memory Loss

While many caregivers and family members use reminiscence therapy much more often than they think they do, they don’t realize the wide array of benefits it has for their loved one with memory loss. For those who don’t generally use reminiscence therapy, try it and see what positive effects it has.

  • Prompts memory. Bringing up items and memories from your loved one’s past can help them form a connection to a place and time. Finding items and reminiscing about memories from years ago can be beneficial as their memories of the most recent occurrences diminish first. Helping them to reminisce can increase their cognitive abilities and open the door to remembering more events and moments from their past.
  • Allows for connection. Reminiscing and sharing stories and other experiences can help you bond with your loved one in a time that it’s much harder to bond. Depending on how good their day is, they may even recall stories that you may have never heard before, helping you get to know your loved one with memory loss better than before.
  • Enhances mood. When your loved one is reminiscing, it helps combat depression, anxiety and agitation. When they remember fond memories and can recall who they used to be, they regain a sense of self that improves their self-esteem  and increases their happiness and positivity.
  • Decreases risk of wandering. If your loved one is prone to wandering, reminiscing might help. Because of it’s ability to bring a senior with memory loss to the present and help them to differentiate the differences between time and place, your loved one is generally less likely to wander out of confusion or trying to get back to the past that they remember.

These are only a few of the ways that reminiscence therapy can be valuable to seniors with memory loss. Try it with your loved one to see all the ways that they can benefit.

Ways to Use Reminiscence Therapy with Seniors with Memory Loss

Whether you are looking for a new way to use reminiscence therapy with your loved one or you would like to try it for the first time, these techniques can help guide you in the right direction. Try some of the following activities to see how they benefit your loved one and help brighten their day.

  • Create a memory box. Gather some items in a box from your loved one’s past and reminisce. Whether it includes childhood trophies from a sport they played for years, a wedding veil, baby shoes or newspaper clippings, it can help to spark a memory that fills their heart with joy.
  • Tell tales of the older days. If you have stories that include your loved one, tell them. While they may not remember right away, it can make them laugh or smile.Remember, however, that you should not ask them if they remember, as this can upset or agitate them.
  • Go through photo albums. Going through photographs that your loved one once took or had in their house can help spark a memory in them that opens the up to telling stories that they remember.
  • Make or bake an old treat. Scents and familiar tastes can help loved ones remember good times with friends and family. Around the holidays, bake some of those familiar treats and see what memories and stories your loved one remembers.
  • Take them somewhere they once loved. If your loved one is able to, take them on an outing. Do they love going to the zoo or to museums? Go on a day that it’s not overly busy. If they loved going to parks or a local hangout, take them, as it can help them reminisce about positive memories. Be sure to keep an eye on them, though, and make sure they aren’t feeling overwhelmed and agitated.

Treating people like family is at the heart of what we do.

CountryHouse at Granite Bay is the very first CountryHouse location in California. With a desirable location among Folsom Lake and the Sierra foothills, and only 25 miles northeast of Sacramento, Granite Bay was the perfect area to place our upscale memory care community. While CountryHouse at Granite Bay may be brand new to California, we are certainly not new to the needs of seniors. And just like every CountryHouse around the United States, we know that personalized care can make all the difference when it comes to quality care and peace of mind.

At CountryHouse at Granite Bay, we provide personalized memory care in an environment that is beautiful and thoughtfully designed. Full of natural light, warmth and tasteful elegance, we want residents and their families to feel welcome and at home. In fact, our staff members are even hand-picked based on their natural empathy. Our staff learns each resident’s story, from their likes and dislikes,to their values and their pasts, in order to customize care and make meaningful connections that provide residents with true moments of joy and the desire to make the most of each day.

With our LifeCycles wellness programming, we encourage residents to connect, engage and enjoy every day. Our LifeCycles programming is designed to focus on the four dimensions of wellness: physical, social, spiritual and intellectual. We achieve this through a range of daily activities and routines, which can include daily bus rides, cookouts, trips and other special events. At CountryHouse at Granite Bay, we strive to make sure our residents make the most of each day, and we believe that when you treat people like family, and keep that at the heart of what you do, residents, their families and their health thrive. Contact us to learn more!

Connect with us today or call us at 916•778•9665 for more information or to schedule a visit.

CountryHouse is part of the Agemark family of senior living communities.