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10 Amazing Games For Dementia Patients To Enjoy in 2024

10 Amazing Games For Dementia Patients To Enjoy in 2024

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games for dementia patients

This article is all fun and only play, that is playing dementia games, to be precise.

Games are fun no matter the age, and the last few years are proof of that! Seniors today engage more and more with games due to the accessibility of the internet and smart devices. So, how do such games fare for seniors struggling with dementia?

A fun fact about senior gaming stats

Did you know that gaming among seniors in the US, aged 50 and above, continues to grow? From 2016 to the present, it has been recorded that seniors aged 60+ continue to engage in different forms of games, be it traditional or online, and the number grows 3% – 4%.

Listed below is a survey taken in 2022 that is of importance!

Dementia games statistics

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. 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 safe games

This is a no-brainer (no pun intended). When you are dealing with patients suffering from dementia, it is important to remember that whatever games you choose have to be safe. Avoid games with small pieces or complex rules that could lead to confusion or accidents. Go for simple and harmless board games that minimize risk.

  • Choose games that help with stimulation

Board games greatly assist in boosting cognitive functions like memory, communication, and emotional well-being. Video games for adults with dementia symptoms are a great way to keep patients active and engaged and help with reasoning and other cognitive abilities.

  • Choose games that help with physical activity

Any game that is fun, safe, and engaging has to involve some sort of physical activity. Simple activities like word games or modified versions of classics can encourage movement and help maintain physical health in dementia patients.

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10 Simple games for dementia patients

There are many games for elderly with dementia symptoms that are not only fun and safe but will significantly improve the cognitive functions of senior patients. Here are some of the fun games to play with dementia patients!

1. Trivia

This is a fun, simple brain game that does not require many objects. When the participants try to recall, it can help stimulate brain functions.

2. Crossword puzzles

Crossword puzzles can be challenging yet stimulating memory games. It helps boost cognitive functions simply when the patients are trying to come up with the answers. It gets their brain working!

3. Snakes and ladders

Snakes and Ladders is undoubtedly one of the board games for dementia patients. Many would recount this as one of their earliest games from childhood. It’s easy, simple, and engaging.

4. Trivia card

Trivia Card questions are also great. Similar to Trivia, these can be good games for dementia patients because they are fun and make them think, which can be stimulating.

5. Go Fish

Go Fish helps players find card matches and cooperate with their opponents (senior friends). It also helps keep focus and boost cognitive functions. If you are looking for card games for dementia patients to enjoy, GoFish should be your top choice!

6. Crazy Eights

Crazy Eights makes for one of the best games for elderly dementia patients, simply because this card game allows you to engage in problem-solving, which increases cognitive function.

7. Hangman

Hangman: If you are looking for one of the best whiteboard games for dementia patients, try Hangman. It’s simple, easy, and fun.

8. Mahjong

One of the most social and most accessible games for dementia people is the Mahjong. It is an online tiled-based game that helps boost brain activity.

9. Learn a new language

Simple yet effective, trying to learn a new language can be made into a fun activity game that will surely keep dementia patients highly engaged.

10. Logic puzzles

Just like regular puzzles, only with logical testing to see what kind of information is hiding in the brain.

20 questions game for dementia patients

If you want to visit your loved one in memory care and spend time with them, then get the gang ready for the ultimate question game! Not only does it help with cognitive stimulation, but it is also fun and engaging enough as a group activity!

First: Prepare your group!

  1. Choose a familiar category: Opt for topics like animals, foods, or celebrities from their era.
  2. Select something specific: Narrow down within the category to make it manageable.
  3. Explain the rules: Inform them they have 20 yes or no questions to guess the item.

Second: Start playing!

  1. Provide truthful answers: Only respond with yes or no.
  2. Offer hints if needed: Offer gentle prompts to assist them.
  3. Celebrate their success: Praise them when they guess correctly.
  4. Play multiple rounds: Keep the fun going with different categories.

Third: Make it flexible:

  1. Reduce question count: Shorten the game to 10 or 15 questions if needed.
  2. Use visuals: Incorporate pictures or objects as clues if words are challenging.
  3. Team play: Involve others for added enjoyment.

Here are the benefits of playing the 20 questions game:

  • Stimulates memory and thinking skills: Promotes active thinking and recall.
  • Improves communication: Encourages clear and concise questioning.
  • Enhances social interaction: Provides a fun and engaging activity for all involved.

Final Thoughts

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.

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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.

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