Playing games was an activity we started out with from the days of our childhood. Games are fun, they are engaging and depending on the type, it helps us to be active. The very memory of games is what links adults to a time of their youth.
So when someone, who has dementia, is struggling with memory, language, or even thinking-process, what is there but games to keep them engaged and stimulate their life to better time. And for that reason, we have come up with games for the elderly with dementia to help keep the cognitive functions running, and a smile that will always be up.
Importance of games for dementia patients
They help with cognitive stimulation
First and foremost, games actually provide cognitive stimulation. Games not only provide stimulation, but can relax the mind and often reduce a depressive state of being. Games for seniors with dementia are so important because considering the state of their life at that point, fun engaging games can act as a bridge to simpler times from their past. Think of games for dementia patients as a workout for the brain and may help slow down a decline in cognitive functions. It ensures a healthy state while keeping the mind active and the time, fulfilled.
Games keep dementia patients engaged
Good games for dementia patients can be highly engaging. It is an activity everyone can participate in. Active games for seniors with dementia like cards, Jenga, or Bingo can assist in group engagement. Playing these fun games can be very relaxing, and help channel a state of focus for dementia patients.
It can keep them from harming themselves
One of the main problems with dementia patients is that due to their condition, they can often become easily agitated, frustrated or even lash out. Simple games for dementia patients are easy to understand, just doesn’t keep them engaged, but saves them from harming themselves.
How to choose best games for dementia ?
Choose games that are safe
This is a no brainer (no pun intended). When you are dealing with patients suffering from dementia, it is important to keep in mind that whatever games you choose, they have to be safe. Though most board games are simple and harmless, there are those that come with little pieces similar to Monopoly or Dice rolls. Dementia patients may forget and get confused and with such items, it could be an accident waiting to happen.
Choose games that help with stimulation
Board games greatly assist in boosting cognitive functions like memory, communication, and emotional well-being. Also, choose video games that are simple to play and easy to enjoy. Video games for adults with dementia symptoms are a great way to keep patients active and engaged, and helps with reasoning, and other cognitive abilities.
Choose games that help with physical activity
Any game that is fun, safe and engaging has to have some sort of physical activity to it. It can be a simple game as sitting in a circle, and saying out random words, or even a modified version of Hangman, where the wrong answer deserves a little dance. Games with physical activities can help maintain a proper health for dementia patients.
Best 20 games for dementia patients
There are many games for elderly with dementia symptoms that are not only fun, safe, but will greatly improve the cognitive functions of senior patients. Here are some of the best games for dementia patients you can find.
Memory games for dementia patients
This is fun brain game that is simple, and does not require much objects. It can help stimulate brain functions when the participants will try to recall.
Crossword puzzles can be challenging yet a stimulating memory game. It helps boost cognitive functions simply when the patients are trying to come up with the answers. Gets their brain working!
Chess can me stimulating and engaging enough if the seniors have symptoms of mild dementia or in an early stage.
Snakes and ladders
Many would recount this as one of their earliest board game from childhood. Snakes and ladders make for a good game for dementia seniors.
Question games for dementia patients
20 Questions game
This games allows you to talk and be engaged with the dementia patient. Not only is this kind of game fun but it gets everyone talking, which is greatly helpful.
Trivia Card questions are also great. Similar to Trivia, but these can be good games for dementia patients, because it is fun and makes them think, which can be stimulating.
Brain games for seniors with dementia patients
Just like regular puzzles, only with logical testing to see what kind of information is hiding in the brain.
Learn a new language
Simple yet effective, trying to learn a new language can be made in to a fun activity game, that will surely keep dementia patients highly engaged.
Go Fish helps players to find card matches, and cooperate with their opponents (senior friends). It also helps keep focus and boost cognitive functions.
Crazy Eights make for one of the best games for elderly dementia patients, simply because this card game allows you engage in problem-solving, which increases cognitive function.
Free online games for dementia patients
One of the most social and easy games for dementia patients is the Mahjong. It is an online tiled-based game that helps boost brain activity.
Jigsaw online puzzle
Puzzles, but online. Puzzles are fun, engaging and help with cognition. At the same time, online puzzle games is becoming a trend among seniors.
Hangman If you are looking for one of the best whiteboard games for dementia patients then try hangman. Simple, easy and fun.
Letter squares can be considered as brain games for dementia patients. Simply find as many likely words on the grid board.
Cognitive games for seniors with dementia
Games with words
Even though most games listed in this article will help with cognitive functions, any specific games with words will greatly boost brain activity, especially if it has to do with memory recall.
App games for dementia patients are not only safe, but their simplicity and vibrancy can greatly reflect on cognitive stimulation.
Printable brain games for seniors with dementia
These puzzles are best for patients who are in mild or early stages of dementia. They can be a bit challenging, but at the same time, highly stimulating.
Word search games can be very stimulating and can keep patients engaged and focused for a long time. Like with word games, it keeps the brain active. Think of word search games as an exercise for the brain.
Electronic games for seniors with dementia
Yahtzee handheld digital
It is Yahtzee, minus the dices and other items. Completely digital, and fully safe.
Slot Machine digital game
At one point or another, everyone has tried to hit the slot machines, These are great games for seniors as they are completely digital, can be found online and it great for a fun activity.
It is not all fun and games when you are living with dementia. It is a struggle. But these games can be the best gateway out of that struggle, even for a short time.
Games for people with dementia actually help stimulate cognitive brain functions. Though it is uncertain till what extent, games are the best way to keep dementia patients active, engaged, and entertained. If you are interested in a list of activates for dementia patient, including games, read this article.
- 15 Activities to Keep Your Dementia Patients Engaged
- Best 28 Books for Dementia Patients
- Tracking Devices for Seniors with Dementia
- Prevent Falls in Dementia Patients: 7 Effective Tips
- Dementia Home Care: Meaning & Importance
- Foods to Beat Dementia: The 15 Best and 5 Worst Foods for Memory
- You Must-Know: Why Dementia Patients Get Angry at Night
Are there any games for people with dementia?
Traditional board games, including puzzles are very helpful for people with dementia. There are no specific games made just for seniors with dementia, as games like Bingo, Jenga or puzzles work well and is known to stimulate the cognitive functions of the elderly.
Where to buy games for dementia patients?
Traditional board games or puzzles can be bought at almost any toy store, even online. But if you are looking at buying games specifically for a dementia patient, then there is the Alzheimer’s Store. They have many items like games, smart assistant products, to even stuffed toys. There are other sites like Relish that also sell similar products.
How can brain games help people with dementia?
Brain games, or almost most games in general require awareness and attention to play. As a result, these requirements help improve the brain of the elderly suffering from dementia. Brain games like Bingo is known to improve short-term conditions of patients. Stimulation is what helps improve the brain condition of people with dementia, something that brain games provide.
Can brain games prevent or delay dementia if you start them early in life?
There are studies that suggest that playing certain brain games in early life, can delay or even prevent dementia. At a young state, the brain is active, and stimulating it further may prevent dementia in the future. The risk of getting dementia is 15% lower for people who play board games.
What to avoid in board games for dementia patients?
It is best to avoid any kind of games that may cause frustration for the dementia patients. Games that include too much physical effort, including small playable parts that can cause harm, should also be avoided. It is important to know that it is best not to buy games that are overly-complicated and may cause confusion.
What type of games are recommended for dementia patients?
Simple, easy to understand and engage in are the best type of games for dementia patients. Puzzles that are easy to connect are highly preferable among such patients. They can be very stimulating, and relaxing at the same time. Card games are also quite popular among dementia patients.