Holidays can be complicated but there are many things care partners can do to make them more enjoyable for the person with dementia and for themselves.
Holidays typically have three components to consider: family, faith and festivities. Dementia Care Expert Melanie Bunn uses the acronym PEACE to show caregivers how making simple changes in each component can lead to a more joyful holiday celebration.
Click here to download a tip sheet to accompany this video.
Decide which pieces of the holiday are most important and meaningful to the person living with dementia.
Think about the whole experience from the perspective of someone living with dementia.
Modify and simplify the festivities to make them more enjoyable for the person with dementia and less stressful for you.
Use cameras, cell phones and video cameras to record special moments. Use props such as holiday foods, decorations and photographs from previous holidays to trigger memories. Be sure to include yourself in some of the pictures and videos. In future years, these can be used to reminisce.
Pull back from all the planning and enjoy the event yourself. Enlist others to help you with your loved one so that you can enjoy your meal and visit with family.
Melanie offers one final tip for keeping PEACE during the holiday: Keep enough routine in the day to maintain familiarity without losing the uniqueness of the holiday.
Alzheimer’s Tennessee wishes you a peaceful holiday season.