Your memories are incredibly important, forming who you are, what you like and reminding you of what makes you feel unique.

Unfortunately, dementia is an illness that can lead to all of that being taken away, reducing a person’s ability to make new memories and, eventually, difficulty in remembering the past.

If someone you love is experiencing dementia, we understand that you’ll want to do everything you can to support them. There are plenty of things you can do to support their memory, including using visual cues such as photographs to help them reminisce on the past.

Craft a photo album

One of the best ways to engage your loved one and support them in remembering their past memories is by creating a photo album for them to enjoy. Use images that chronicle their life right through from their childhood to the present day, and you’ll find this can assist them in remembering key moments and understanding how some people or places may have changed.

The process of creating a personal photo album is also a great activity to do together. By going through snapshots of the past, you can encourage more conversation about their memories, further exercising cognitive ability.

Add captions to large photos

When adding the photos to the album, ensure to caption each image, providing prompts for when your loved one is flicking through the collection by themselves. Include key details such as the names of those who are in the photo, as well as when and where it was taken. Ideally, ensure each image has been enlarged to make it easier to view.

Continue to take photos

Taking photographs on a day to day basis can also be greatly beneficial. By giving a person a camera, you can enable them to continue capturing more memories, and supporting them to be able to revisit recent events and people.

Depending on a person’s stage of dementia, they may be less able to use a camera, so it is important to find a way that will work for them. Small digital cameras can be easy to use, while polaroid cameras can offer simplicity. Alternatively, carers and friends could be able to help.

Explore different visual aids

There are plenty of other visual aids that you can explore to support your loved one with their memory. Scrapbooking can be an excellent activity for triggering memories, but also giving them a chance to explore their crafty side with a range of colours and materials.

Here at Rosebank Care Home, we support our residents in reminiscing on the past through activities such as scrapbooking and photo collage making. As a dementia specialist home, we have a range of activities designed to stimulate your loved one’s mind and keep them socially engaged.

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