When someone you love or care for is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or a memory loss condition, it’s natural to want to keep them safe. While your intentions may be good, it is crucial for you as a caretaker not to reject some experiences simply because of Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. Keeping your loved one from participating in some activities, like going outside, may appear to be a good idea, but it might lead to agitation or depression. Your older loved one will also be missing out on some benefits of nature that can significantly improve one’s quality of life.
Spending time outside with a loved one might also make them feel less isolated and lonely. This is because going outside provides your loved one with the opportunity for more social interaction. Being outside provides an additional opportunity for socialization. It’s crucial to remember that your loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia may not be able to manage a lot of activities at once, so start gently. Make any outings as safe as possible while not putting too many restrictions on your loved one. Stay close to home, for example, but make it enjoyable. Check to see if they are wearing comfortable shoes and appropriate clothing for the weather and pay attention to whether or not they are enjoying the activity. If they aren’t, try again another day or see what else they want to do.
Mental Health Benefits
Individuals suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or dementia frequently experience significant levels of stress and agitation. Being outside may elevate one’s spirits, reduce stress, and improve one’s mood. Getting outside may provide your loved ones a stronger sense of self and give them greater control, which can boost their confidence, self-esteem, and happiness.
Physical Health Benefits
Those suffering from dementia, as well as their caretakers, might considerably boost their physical health by spending time outside. These benefits of spending time in nature include increased wakefulness, nutrition, and sleep. Exercising outside can boost linguistic and memory expressiveness, as well as activity and exercise levels.
As many of the activities that older adults like may be done either indoors or outdoors, try to take some of them outside. Make some of these outdoor activities a part of your loved one’s everyday routine:
- Gardening. This is not just a pleasant activity for older adults with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, but it also keeps their thoughts concentrated and engaged.
- Exercising. Take a stroll in the garden or park with your loved one. Outdoor activities such as yoga or tai chi can help to relax the mind and allow for better sleep at night.
- Eating. Pack a picnic basket with some finger foods for you and your loved one.
Choose TerraBella Cramer Mountain
Our retirement community’s approach to memory care was designed and developed to harness the power of proven methodologies and reach a higher level of personalization, with the goal of bringing about pleasant experiences in all areas of our residents’ life. Every day at TerraBella Cramer Mountain includes healthy connections and purpose-driven experiences.