Methods for prompting a person’s memory

/ / Methods for prompting a person’s memory

Methods for prompting a person’s memory

Some people with dementia appear to ‘travel back in time’, reliving memories from when they were younger. They might expect grown up children to be small again, or expect their parents to still be alive, or even revert back in their mind to previous marriages or relationships.

There are cues you can use to help the person with dementia make the connections between the past and the present. The following tips may help to do this:

  • Put up photos around the house of important times you were together, such as weddings, birthdays, children’s parties
  • Show the progression of time in these photos, so that they show a spouse or partner when young, but also throughout time and how they are now
  • Keep a photo album on display with the photos clearly marked with people’s names, the year and the event, following the progression from the past to the present day
  • Wear clothes around the house that the person would associate with you; these could include a favourite item of clothing or styles from when you were both younger
  • Wear aftershave or perfume that the person associates with you. If they have a favourite perfume or aftershave, encourage its use; often the sense of smell can evoke positive memories when words cannot

Source Dementia UK

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