Many Alzheimer’s patients are finding solace through the utilization of memory books. This helpful mechanism is found to promote memory, allow refocusing, and foster communication. These benefits are important, as the number of people with Alzheimer’s is always growing. According to the Fisher Center for Alzheimer’s Research Foundation, “every 65 seconds, someone in the United States is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.”
Thus, with such a high statistic, it’s imperative that people know about the benefits of memory books. If you or your loved one has Alzheimer’s, here are three benefits of an Alzheimer’s memory book.
1. A Memory Book Offers A Tangible Connection to the Past
Using a memory book is a great way to stimulate the memory of someone who is suffering from Alzheimer’s. Akin to a memory box, the tools within the book are there to act as a jumping off point for other thoughts. According to Alzheimer’s Net “visual aids – especially photos – can help stimulate memories for someone with Alzheimer’s…and play a key role in allowing those living with the disease to reminisce.”
Thus, through the photos within the book, your loved one is giving a tangible block by which they can build upon other memories!
2. It Helps Foster Communication
A memory book allows patients a tangible jumping off point for communication. This is especially important for mid to late stage Alzheimer’s, as this stage often features a loss of verbal skills, or the ability to comprehend the written word. Thus, if your loved one has lost the ability to communicate verbally, they can utilize the book to connect to the world around them.
For example, they can communicate that a picture brings them joy through non-verbal cues. A warm sigh, or a small smile is a great way for them to express themselves outside of the constraints of verbal language.
3. It’s A Form of Refocusing
If you find that your loved one is suffering prolonged bouts of confusion, a memory book might allow them a respite from their agitation. The act of looking through the photos has found to be a successful distraction technique. It is an activity that your loved one can undergo while they recenter their thoughts.
This refocusing tool becomes especially useful when entering into new places. As an Alzheimer’s patient, even if paired with a home health aide, they are going to have to go to medical facilities. The hospital and the doctor’s office can be upsetting to someone with Alzheimer’s. Yet, with the memory book, they are given a tool of familiarity in a place of unfamiliarity.