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Supporting loved ones living with dementia at Christmas

14 December 2023

Latest News

Written byOwain Farrington

Supporting loved ones living with dementia at Christmas

Christmas is a time of joy, love, and togetherness. It’s a season when families come together to celebrate, exchange gifts, and create cherished memories. For loved ones living with dementia, however, this time of year can be both joyful and challenging. Supporting your relatives during the Christmas season involves more than just gift-giving – it’s about staying connected and creating a comfortable, festive atmosphere. In this article, we’ll explore ways to support your loved ones at Christmas, emphasising the importance of staying connected with family and decorating the house thoughtfully.

Staying connected with family

Memory sharing
Encourage family members to share stories and memories from past Christmases. This can be especially meaningful for loved ones living with dementia, as reminiscing about happy times can bring comfort and connection.

Personalised gifts
Choose gifts that are meaningful and tailored to your loved one’s interests and hobbies. Personalised gifts, such as photo albums or custom-made items, can evoke cherished memories.

Inclusive activities
Plan activities that accommodate the mobility and energy levels of your family members, from young children to those who may have limited mobility. Simple games, puzzles, or holiday-themed crafts can be enjoyed together.

Decorating the house appropriately

Safe decorations
When decorating, be sure to prioritise safety. Avoid using decorations that pose tripping hazards or could be harmful to your family members, and secure wires and cords to the floor or walls to prevent accidents.

Familiarity for dementia
For loved ones living with dementia, familiar and non-overwhelming decorations are essential. Avoid excessive flashing lights or loud decorations. Opt for traditional, classic decorations that they may recognise from their past.

Memory ornaments
Consider creating memory ornaments that feature family photos, names, or special moments. Hanging these ornaments on the Christmas tree can be a meaningful way to help your loved one reminisce.

Sensory-friendly decorations
Some individuals, including those with dementia, may benefit from sensory-friendly decorations. Incorporate textures and scents they find comforting, such as soft, plush decorations or fragrant wreaths.

Gentle lighting
Soft, warm lighting can create a cosy and inviting atmosphere. Use candles, string lights, or LED candles to add a gentle glow to the room.

Music selection
Play familiar and soothing Christmas music to enhance the festive ambiance. Consider creating a playlist of your loved one’s favourite holiday songs.

Support your loved one with award-winning care

Supporting loved ones who’re living with dementia during the Christmas season is an opportunity to show them love, care, and inclusion. Staying connected with family through personalised gifts and sharing memories can foster a sense of togetherness. Thoughtful decoration choices, especially for those with dementia, can create a warm and comfortable environment, enabling your loved ones to enjoy the winter season to the fullest. By taking these steps, you can ensure that Christmas remains a time of joy, connection, and love for your family.

Radfield Home Care has been named a top 20 home care provider for six consecutive years by review aggregator, Homecare.co.uk. If you would like to talk to someone about the possibilities of care, or just have a chat about what options are out there, reach out to your local Radfield Home Care office here.


Owain Farrington

Owain Farrington

Head of Marketing

An experienced content creator with a varied marketing skillset. Owain is an accomplished verbal and visual communicator.

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