Alzheimer’s and reminiscences: Use mementos as cues

Alzheimer’s can rob your liked kinds of precious reminiscences. Create a memory box to assistance them remember the past.

By Mayo Clinic Employees

Daily life is like a tapestry, woven from reminiscences of individuals and events. Your unique tapestry reminds you of who you are, where you’ve been and what you’ve done.

People today in the early stages of Alzheimer’s ailment and other dementias normally have trouble recalling recent events, but reminiscences from early in everyday living may well continue to be. Regrettably, Alzheimer’s ailment gradually will take these reminiscences, far too. If you happen to be caring for someone with dementia you can assistance him or her manage the start out of memory loss by building a memory box or bank.

Creating a memory bank

Reminiscences can be preserved in a lot of techniques. You can:

  • Retain an electronic folder with pics of household customers and shots of mementos from the person’s everyday living
  • Create down descriptions of vital events in the person’s everyday living
  • Create a scrapbook or box with pics, newspaper clippings, letters, postcards, greeting playing cards, sketches, poetry or musical verses
  • Make a video or audio recording of personalized tales
  • Include things like favored tracks or Tv set displays

Consider producing copies of anything precious for safekeeping.

When adding pics and documents to a memory box:

  • Use a jar or exclusive box. Label the jar or box and retain it in a spot the person can very easily accessibility.
  • Include things like older pics. What age is your liked 1 living in his or her head? You will want to consist of plenty of shots from that time.
  • Just about every picture tells a tale. Create that tale as a caption for each and every photo. Include things like the names of any individual in the picture and the date, if attainable.

To get the person speaking for a video or audio recording, you might start out by reminiscing about his or her household heritage, traditions and celebrations. Childhood online games, residences and pets are normally very good opening matters — specifically as dementia progresses and recent events become challenging to remember. You might also speak about favored sports, books, audio and hobbies, as very well as cultural or historical events.

Based on the position of the person’s memory, you might also want to job interview neighbors, good friends and household customers.

Using the memory bank

The moment you develop the person’s memory bank, use it. Pull out pics and other products throughout the day to remind the person of exclusive associations, events and destinations.

By documenting the person’s tale, you can affirm the constructive matters he or she has done and, potentially, can continue to do. Even right after the person’s reminiscences fade, building this form of treasury displays that you price and regard his or her legacy — and it can assistance remind you who the person was ahead of dementia.