Dementia is a group of symptoms that affect mental cognitive tasks such as memory, communication and the power of reasoning. Dementia has many types and one is Alzheimer’s disease, which is the most common type.
This is the common terms when the brain no longer functions properly. This is not only common in the old age but younger people in their early 50s, 60s are also affected. It is no longer the disease of old age or seniors nowadays.
There is no treatment discovered yet but scientist are doing their job for the ongoing research and experiments.
Humans are intelligent and I have positively inclined that with the help our spiritual faith, a treatment breakthrough is on its way.
I have been working with this type of population for years, I have met people and experienced different interactions with being with them.
Most of them are educated, holds a high position in their profession, principal, doctors, scientist, and to name them all is not enough.
That means, that no one is exempted with this kind of disease that affects cognition. It is really sad because this is not reversible. The disease progresses as time passes by.
Working with dementia clients requires overflowing, I repeat, overflowing patience, understanding, and compassion. Workers and families also must have to have these attributes.
Safety is one of the priorities for them. There is always some few factors involved but keeping them safe and comfortable is vital.
Well, before furthering on and on
Let me just bring out some practical thoughts for the 10 top best gift ideas for FEMALE with dementia and/or Alzheimer’s disease that may help or assist you in the selection of what to bring to your loved ones or someone who have this disease.
Dementia has different stages but I am mostly discussing or talking about the LATE stage here.
I have decided to do female first then I would post males sooner. Just check it out later.
Comfort VS Price$$$
To be able to provide comfort for her, the value or the price of your gift does NOT really matter. May it be less expensive or it cost you a fortune. It is how and what it provides for the use and quality of the gift you brought for her needs. Take note, I said, “her needs”.
ELASTIC PANTS. This might be a shock to you but for people who have dementia, this is a great invention. We want to encourage your loved ones or her to continue on being independent on her daily activities of living. At least, to do the little left on her and that is her independence.
Even a very simple daily activities of living is a daily struggle and challenging for them. These elastic pants are easy and simple for her to pull down and pull up. Sometimes, directions from us or from you will cue her to do that simple task. This prevents frustrations and agitation on their part.
You do not want to complicate her world by bringing or giving her jeans or pants with buttons and zipper or with a belt on. Their world is like getting smaller (due to deterioration of the brain). Just stick on elastic waistband pants, it does not matter what type of fabric.
The simpler the better for them. If you still can simplify it, do it.
LONG SLEEVES SHIRTS OR TOPS and SOCKS
Mostly ladies feel cold even with no change in room temperature; even with changes of weather winter, spring, fall or summer.
Long sleeves keep them comfy and warm. Plus, socks for those tired achy arthritic feet.
Gift givers must have to ensure to get one size higher than her normal size. This is to give an extra space when it shrunk or when it is laundered.
SWEATSHIRTS OR SWEATER
As I mentioned earlier, women tend to be feeling cold. So I added sweatshirts or sweater. This is useful and a must-have in their closet. It is one of the basic need, believe me, a couple or more it will do.
There are warm sweaters that are made from a different fabric and different textiles. For instance, the fleece fabric. It is not so costly but provides or do the job, provides warmth, soft and comfortable.
I personally prefer fleece because it does not shrink, keeps its color even with multiples washing, it stays the same, soft and warm.
SHOES WITH VELCRO TYPE
The image at the right side is just an example of Velcro-type shoes for women. It is a sturdy, simple and easy to put on, simply slip on her feet and a simple touched her Velcro and done.
Shoes with lace are not great for her, the task alone to laced up is complicated for her to do. Also, if lace is not done properly, the lace will be a trip hazard.
This is definitely recommended for her and for him. Shoes are for their stability when mobilizing around the house or their home. You also need to check on the non-slip soles; always choose the non-slip soles shoes.
UNDERSHIRTS (NO BRAS)
At this stage (last stage of dementia), some still use bra but mostly have abandoned it at this time, or I mean are not using. This is an observation that I also noted in my years of being with clients who have dementia.
I know that having all these accessories on a woman’s body all her life is and has been a part of it. It is a sudden change of her interest leaving us in awe.
On the other hand, us, caregivers, caters her needs now that she depends on certainly on us.
Undershirts replace the bra for her at this point. Undershirts are a must-have clothing for her.
I know what you are thinking 😉
She wears undershirt first (first layer), then her long sleeves (second layer), then her sweater (last layer). Yes, she is warm, comfortable and cozy! With her wearing her elastic waistband pants. Complete it with warm socks on and her Velcro shoes. Can you see the imaginable picture?
Let’s go on, Number 5.
CHILDREN’S BOOK, COLORFUL MAGAZINES OR COLORING PENS OR BOOKS
These items are great redirections and activities for her. She draws, scribbles or does an amazing thing you’ve never expected. You will see her triumphant face after she’s with her scribbles.
yes, they are only scribbles but are essential to them in the view that they are happy and contented with what she had just accomplished.
Children’s Books and Colorful magazines, WHY? Children’s books are very visual, the font is larger, the children’s story or content is easy, simple for her to read. It is not condensed though well illustrated.
In dementia, old memories are the last one to go. The newest memory is the first one that is gone or has no memory at all.
Take note, that their memories are back all the way to their childhood as well.
So, children’s book is one of the best gift ideas recommended. She might be able to recall her favorite childhood stories. Try reading it with or to her, you will absolutely witness the priceless facial expressions and reactions.
I’m sure she’d love to hear you read it for her. You are certainly initiating conversation.
Please try these tips, let me know in the comment box below. I would really appreciate a feedback. I love to know how did it go with your approach and when you have tried these.
This gadget is quite tricky, due to the vibration that it creates when using an electronic toothbrush. This might startle her. The toothbrush can easily reach and cleans the teeth without a lot of twisting and less pressure applied as well.
Providing mouth care is a very challenging task for caregivers. For her, if her initial reaction is like withdrawing from it, stop then re-start then re-approach. Repeat.
The manual brush can do the job but not as good as the electronic brush.
MUSIC-ANYTHING ABOUT MUSIC
Music is the song of our soul. They loved music! From children’s song to hip-hop songs.
Find out what’s their favorite songs, singer or band. You will see some excitement, frenzy emotions and twinkle from her eyes. A small iPod with an earphone to use will do to deliver those popular songs in her time or her love songs.
OK, don’t roll your eyes here; these may be an entertainment to her, a toy or a sort of comfort.
SOFT STUFF TOYS ( BATTERY OPERATED OR NOT)
This is a typical gift idea for everyone (all ages). This is mostly used also therapeutically as comfort for our dementia clients. Something to hug and play with.
This is one of the safest best gift ideas for her. Can take multiple washing and something else ( I mean, might be left in a corner or taken by co-clients).
Also, try the cat stuff battery operated and/or the dog stuff battery-operated as well. This is like bringing a real cat or dog to play with them.
My number 1 is unexpected though I want you to brace yourself.
BABY DOLLS (Battery operated or not)
These may sound absurd but these were tried to my clients and was really working well especially when managing responsive behavior. It is called Doll Therapy.
It helps in calming her down. This is somewhat a comfort for her as well. Hand it to her, you take note of her reaction, she will be so excited to hang onto it.
Do some trials, observe and note how she reacts, you will be amazed, astonished and impressed on what these baby dolls can do to her. Your receiver’s (female with dementia) face lits up and the smile is priceless.
These are the top best gift ideas so far. Basically, it is based on experience, practical application, and some research. Dementia consists of different characteristics and different approaches for the types of dementia.
I just presented one of the few many and some simple ways on how to manage and approach with best gift ideas to assist you to what really needed for family or givers to bring to a female with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
There is no guarantee that the female with dementia will like it but it is worth a try to your loved ones. Believe me, I have seen it worked effectively.
I really, really, really would love to hear what you think about this. And, in case you tried, please leave me a feedback in my comment section. It is very important for me to know. I wish you good luck and all the best!