What can be done to make living with dementia better?

March, 2023

The best thing to do is to approach each day as positively as you can, this applies to the person living with dementia and their informal carer. Easier said than done but here are some tips for you around taking time for yourself each day to relax and enjoy your favourite activities.

1) Exercise: Exercise can help improve cognitive function, reduce stress and anxiety, improve immune health, and increase endurance. Activities like walking, dancing, swimming, or light weightlifting can be helpful. Even things like housework or taking the dog for a walk count as exercise.

2) Music therapy: Music can help reduce agitation and aggression, improve mood, and stimulate memories. Engaging in music therapy can help people with dementia connect with their emotions and reduce stress.

3) Art therapy: Art therapy can help reduce anxiety, increase self-esteem, and encourage self-expression. People with dementia can engage in different art forms, such as painting, drawing, or sculpting.

4) Cognitive games: Games like puzzles, crossword puzzles, and board games can help improve cognitive function, memory retention, and problem-solving skills. These types of games can help people with dementia stay mentally active and socially engaged.

5) Gardening: Gardening can provide physical exercise and improve overall well-being. It can also help stimulate the senses and provide a sense of purpose and accomplishment.

6) Reminiscence therapy: Reminiscence therapy involves engaging in conversation about past experiences or memories. This type of therapy can help improve mood, cognitive function, and social interaction.

7) Animal therapy: Spending time with animals can help reduce anxiety, improve mood, and stimulate positive emotions. Petting or playing with cats, dogs, or other animals can be a great way for people with dementia to connect with the world around them.

8) Cooking: Cooking can help improve cognitive function, enhance social interaction, and provide a sense of accomplishment. People with dementia can also participate in cooking classes or meal preparation programmes.

9) Reading: Reading can be a calming and stimulating activity that can help improve cognitive function, memory retention, and reduce anxiety. Audio books or large print materials can be helpful for those with visual impairments.

10) Home-based activities: Simple activities like folding laundry, sorting buttons, or organizing a drawer can be helpful in providing a sense of accomplishment, reducing anxiety, and keeping the mind active.

It's important to note that every person with dementia is unique and will have individual preferences and needs. As such, it's important to discuss with healthcare providers or caregivers to determine the most suitable activities for you.


Kind Regards




Ruth Chauhan MSc (Healthcare Ethics & Law) FRSPH


Director/Dementia, Health & Well-being Specialist: AmbaCare Solutions CIC