3 Generations - Grandfather Dad and Son taking a walk outside enjoying the fall colors

Activities to Help Seniors With Dementia

Are you responsible for the daily care of a senior with dementia? You’re amongst millions of adult caretakers. Just in the United States alone, there are 15.7 million people taking care of someone living with dementia.

In a memory care home, it’s your responsibility to keep them healthy mentally and physically. Coming up with rich mindful activities can take care of both of these responsibilities.

Although, it may be hard to come up with activities to keep them busy. To help you, we created a list of easy and affordable activities to help seniors with dementia stay mentally active. Continue reading to learn more about each of the dementia activities.

Tap Into Their Memories

Oftentimes, those with dementia feel happy when remembering bits of their past. Using past mementos such as songs, photos, or even familiar faces can keep those memories. Here are some activities you can do to continue to stimulate those precious moments.

Create a Memory Box

A memory box is a great place to keep trinkets and mementos that invoke positive feelings, but nothing sentimental or breakable in the box. You may use things that remind them of their hobbies or career, so they can maintain a sense of identity. For example, perhaps include an old work shirt or nametag in the box.

Create a Song Playlist

Creating a playlist with senior citizens is a fun way to learn new music and help connect them to their past. Add songs you know they’re familiar with or songs from the generations they grew up in. You can put the songs on a CD or maintain them online.

Create a Photo Album

Creating a photo album for or with someone with dementia can help their mental wellness. Showing them important faces can reduce the feeling of isolation and depression. It’s also beneficial to create the album in chronological order, so they can see the progression of their lives.

Read Their Favorite Book

As dementia progresses, seniors will slowly lose their ability to read and comprehend words. Reading their favorite book is a nice gesture to keep them attached to things they love but can no longer do. You can read them a more recent book that they love or a book from their childhood.

Keep Them Physically Active

Exercise should be an important part of everyone’s daily activities, especially those living with dementia. It can slow down the progression of side effects of dementia, like mental deterioration. Here is a list of senior-approved exercises.

Water Exercise

With supervision, water exercises can be a safe and fun form of exercise for seniors. The water prevents stress on joints but also allows participants to gain muscle. Often local groups offer senior citizen classes, which will also keep them social with others.

Chair Exercise

Performing exercises on a chair is a great option for those with balance or mobility issues. Chair exercises can help seniors increase their flexibility and strength. These exercises are friendly for inside the home or with a group.

Outdoor Exercise

It’s important that those seniors with dementia spend some time out of the house. Luckily, fun exercises can take place during these times, such as gardening and walking. According to doctors, twenty minutes of outdoor activities can increase mental wellness.


Depending on the senior’s dementia progression, beginner’s yoga is an excellent option for exercise. Yoga allows them to remain connected to the capabilities of their bodies, reduces stress, and increases strength. Seniors can do this activity safely indoors or outdoors, and maybe with a group in a different environment like a dementia care home.

Play Mental Games

According to a study by WebMD, mental games can help slow memory loss. Additionally, playing mental games daily can help with the performance of everyday tasks, such as housework. Here are some ways you can help stimulate the brain through games and activities.

Puzzle Cube

A puzzle cube is a great example of a no-pressure game for mental health. Seniors can try to solve the puzzle or create different designs with an assortment of colors. This is a great way to keep their hands busy while stimulating their problem-solving skills.

Playing Cards

There are many activities seniors can perform with a deck of cards. They can play simple games such as go-fish, solitaire, or war. Those with progressed dementia can shuffle the cards or match the colors up to keep themselves busy.

Arts and Crafts

Mental stimulation games can also be in the form of arts and crafts. You can give seniors some string and dry pasta to create patterned necklaces or bracelets. This will also help with hand-eye coordination, which often deteriorates in those with dementia.

Household Chores

A simple and helpful way to keep a senior engaged is to have them fold laundry. Towels are a great option because they are soft and safe, plus you don’t have to worry about them getting wrinkly. It will make the seniors feel like they are actively participating in the household, which can boost their self-worth.

Learn More About Seniors with Dementia

There are many simple activities seniors with dementia can perform to elevate their mental activity. These mental activities can target their memory, mobility, and hand-eye coordination. We hope you found one that suits the senior in your life.

There is also the option to place your senior in a dementia or Alzheimer’s care home, which provides them with stimulating activities and round the clock assistance. If you want to learn more about memory care homes for seniors with dementia, contact us. Here at Inspired Living, we are proud of the care we give to seniors in our assisted living and memory care communities.