Follow
Share

Does anyone know of any websites that have easy crossword puzzle books for dementia patients? My mom used to love doing them, and still does on a good day. I got her a book that says "Easy" Crossword puzzles on the front, but she finds them difficult and frustrating. I did find the MindStart website and have ordered her a few things. I'd like her to have something to do to occupy her mind and time when I'm not there. Any suggestions?

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
Babalou what a great way to get your mom to participate! I found with my mom if I said, "Do you want to go here or there" she'd invariably say no. But if I go over and say, "OK mom, we're going out to lunch" she's much more apt to say yes. I used to get, "I'm too tired" but I'd persist. And she'd always have a good time. But my mom is very content to stay in her room and amuse herself.

Becky, you can only do what you can do. In some senses, your mom is reaping the results of her difficult behavior throughout her life. It's not your responsibility to make her life today perfect. Do the best you can and let the rest go!
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

Becky; we (mostly my sister in law) were concerned that mom wasn't participating in activities at the nursing home. She watches Fox News all day, and "people watches" whats going on in the hallway. I don't worry about her as she is not unhappy...happy to see us when we come to visit, but contented otherwise. I'm blessed, I know.

What IS working is having the aides and activities director say to her "Flo, now it's time to...." rather than "would you like to....". My mother has usually said "no" to anything offered, or sometimes shrugs. We decided that shrug could mean "yes" and SIL came up with the "Now it's time to" because mom is very compliant with what others "tell:" her to do.

It's working! She's been going to the movie, to the afternoon tea and to the "mocktail hour". It's amazing how changing the wording can change the response.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

Becky, I didn't realize your mom was in AL. Maybe the activities at the AL are not well suited for her. I might discuss it with the social director or the person in charge about finding something she can enjoy. Certainly, they have others who have dementia.

In most of the AL facilities that I visit, the majority have dementia. When my cousin went to Memory Care AL, the activities were a little different than at the regular AL, but are designed specifically for those with dementia.They include things like stretching, music, games, movies, etc. But still, if the resident refuses to participate, there is isn't much you can do.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Thank you all again, for your insight and suggestions. Of course you are right. Her cognitive decline makes many of the things she once did, increasingly difficult. I did order her some word find puzzles. I wish she would take part in the activities offered at the AL facility, but she's never been one to do those kind of things. My dilemma is that I am the only person left to care for her. Her personality throughout her life drove family and friends away. I would love to have some other family members to share the responsibility, but that's not going to happen. I am trying to remind myself daily that I am only one person, and I'm doing the best I can. And, it may be that I'm more worried about how my mother spends her day than she is. It doesn't seem to bother her.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

My mom did crosswords all her life. She and Dad used to grade each other on them every morning. She could do the difficult ones, no problem. She did them on car trips and while watching television. She continued to do them (easier versions) in the nursing home. What finally ended that was her inability to write in the little squares. For a while we tried bigger puzzles, but arthritis made that much careful printing too much for her.

I see one woman there always sitting with a word-find book. She is usually alone and oblivious to what is going on around her.

I'd say continue with the crosswords as long as Mom has any interest in it. If word-find is new to her, she may or may not be able to pick it up now. Worth a try.

My mother likes to color, as long as one of us sits with her and colors, too. It did not turn out to be an activity to keep her occupied when she is alone. And as to the very popular "adult" coloring books available now, the are absolutely not appropriate for someone with deteriorated motor skills, short attention spans, or dementia! I print images from the internet on card stock for my mother. We started with children's books which were the right challenge level, but not suitable topics.

She used to like watching television, but has apparently lost interest in that. What she always seems to be doing when I come to visit is reading magazines. She subscribes to several and the nursing home has many sitting in all common spaces. She still loves looking at recipes, event though she hasn't cooked in years.

We are not very concerned that she isn't very active when she is alone. The NH has several activities every day, and she is willing to go to almost any of them. If she does a "sport" activity that includes light exercise in the morning and plays bingo in the afternoon that is probably enough stimulation for her. And she has at least four family visitors each week. We color or sort coins or read magazines and the newspaper or take her for wheelchair walks.

Beckyl, I'm afraid sunnygirl1 is right. There does come a time when it may not be practical to expect a person with dementia to entertain herself. I think the best option is making sure there are other people in her life to see to it that she gets some activity and stimulation each day. Don't worry that she is not entertained all of her waking hours.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

My 96-year old mom with cognitive decline has given up on crosswords for the most part (used to do the daily paper crossword). But she still loves Word Find books from the Dollar Store. You find the words listed at the bottom of the page. So it's more of a visual puzzle than a language puzzle. You might try one of those for a buck to see if she can work them. My mom feels like they keep her mind working.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

There are also some books that have the hidden pictures in them and you have to find the items on the list. I ordered some through Amazon at one time and both my MIL and friends 91 year old mother have enjoyed them.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

How about an adult coloring book and color pencils? They seem to be pretty popular and do not require any spelling.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I'm not sure how long most dementia patients are able to enjoy crossword puzzles, but if she's struggling, then I might not keep giving them to her.

Leaving a person who has dementia alone with hopes that they will entertain themselves is just quite speculative. Unless they are in the early stage, then they have a hard time amusing or occupying themselves with activities. I think many watch tv, but after a while they don't get much from it. Maybe others will have more ideas for you.

One thing that works is having a person talk to them and engage them in an activity, but having them to it for themselves may not work that well. This has been my experience. I provided color pencils, books, cards, tv's, movies, magazines, etc., but none of them worked well.

Do you have an adult care program that she could go to? That seems to work really well.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.