Holiday Activities for Seniors with Dementia

holiday ideas for loved ones with dementiaThe holiday season is a time to be with family and enjoy traditions and gift giving. This can sometimes be difficult when you have a loved one with Alzheimer’s or other dementias, but they can still participate in these seasonal joys. There are some adjustments to be made to accommodate for our loved ones, but it’s nothing that will put a damper on the festivities. Everyone should be able to have fun during the holidays, even if they can’t do what they used to.

Holiday Crafts for Seniors with Dementia

One of the things you can do to make sure everyone has a task and remain less stressed is ornament decorating. It’s a crafty activity that allows people suffering from debilitating mental diseases to have a job and responsibility without getting in anyone’s way during other preparations. It also allows them to express themselves creatively, which is something they may not have the opportunity to do very often.

Holiday Cooking With Seniors with Dementia

Holiday cooking and baking with someone who has dementia can be a fun activity for the whole family. For example, baking cookies is one holiday past time everyone can enjoy together. While individuals with dementia shouldn’t be left to cook or bake unsupervised, there’s no reason to forgo kitchen activities altogether. Cookies are simple and easy to create and can give your loved one a real sense of accomplishment and usefulness.

Incorporate Classic Holiday Music and Movies

Grab all of those holiday movies and set them up on a reel. Traditional movies such as “Miracle on 34th Street” and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” are sure to stir up fond memories and create a familiar atmosphere. Letting your loved one choose can also make them feel included. Playing holiday music can also be a nostalgic way to celebrate.

If your loved one is suffering from a form of dementia, don’t put too much added pressure on yourself in an attempt to recreate old traditions. Family members will understand if you do a holiday breakfast instead of a holiday dinner. Placing less stress on yourself makes it easier for you and your loved one to enjoy your holiday! If it means a great deal to you to put as many of your traditions into your celebration as you can, in-home companions or nurses may be a good solution. They can help you out with shopping and cooking as well as organizing activities.

To learn more about at-home companion or nursing services in Miami, please contact us to schedule a consultation.


Holidays and Alzheimer’s Families | Caregiver Center | Alzheimer’s Association. (n.d.). Retrieved October 25, 2016, from

Scott, P. S. (n.d.). Dementia Holiday Activities That Lower Stress and Raise the Joy. Retrieved October 25, 2016, from