A dementia diagnosis is a staggering blow to both individuals and their families.
Undoubtedly, the condition will adversely impact the afflicted party's quality of life. Still, that doesn't mean there aren't ways for seniors with dementia to cope and get the most out of their cognitive functions.
For instance, starting a journal is said to be massively beneficial to senior dementia patients. Let us examine the reasons why journaling is such an effective coping strategy:
Homewatchcaregivers.com is an eldercare website who believes strongly in seniors with dementia keeping a journal. They point out that the activity helps with daily orientation.
As is common knowledge, dementia deals with the loss of cognitive functions. A person's day-to-day framework can suddenly be thrown out the window. Journaling provides a concrete reference point that can keep patients grounded and attuned to where they need to be and what they should be doing.
In fact, establishing that kind of routine and stability is said to reduce anxiety in dementia patients.
It should come as no surprise that the confusion caused by dementia can tremendously hinder a patient’s mental health. Any method of offsetting a patient’s anxiety symptoms should be incorporated into their daily routine.
Maintaining Daily Functions
Something else to consider with dementia patients is how repeating a daily task – such as journaling – may increase the likelihood of them maintaining that ability.
Writing a journal necessitates the sharpening of many cognitive functions and mental muscles. There's the need to organise one's thoughts into coherent sentences. Furthermore, the writer must decipher what they deem as necessary enough to record and share in their entries.
It’s a matter of “use it or lose it.” Keeping a journal ensures those mental muscles are flexed and functioning as best as possible – given the situation.
Aiding in Memory Retention
Memory-loss is synonymous with dementia.
Through journaling, it becomes possible to maintain some memories—therefore improving their overall quality of life and social belonging.
For instance, keeping a receipt from a meal out or train tickets might remind a dementia patient of a social outing. This can be brought forth in conversation and make them feel present, instead of the elephant in the room.
Manage Dementia Through Journaling
Seniors with dementia don’t need to give up on the life they once had. Journaling can provide a holistic solution that improves cognitive functions, overall mood, and quality of life.