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Socializing and Engagement: An Important Part of Memory Care

Human beings thrive on emotional connection. We are social beings, and are naturally drawn to each other to experience joy, sorrow, interest, excitement and every emotion you can think of. That need for socialization doesn’t go away as we age – in fact, it only increases in importance. For individuals living with a form of dementia like Alzheimer’s disease, staying socially engaged can actually help improve their quality of life.

 Socialization – being with friends or loved ones, being involved in activities that are interesting to you or using your brain to solve a problem or perform a function – boosts your mood, improves your cognitive function and reduces stress. For memory care patients, being social and engaged reduces boredom, depression and disturbing behaviors as well as providing a sense of purpose and happiness.

Here are four reasons why consistent engagement and socialization play such an important role in memory care:

It improves brain health. Studies show that people in the early stages of dementia who have a broad social network have better cognitive function and a slower decline than those who are socially isolated.

It provides a sense of belonging. Having a purpose is incredibly important to all of us, no matter how young or old we are. By interacting with others, we gain a feeling of belonging. Pair that with an exercise or activity that’s interesting or important to you, and your sense of self-worth increases.

It can help enhance and maintain focus. When the brain is active and challenged, it becomes easier for older individuals to focus on tasks. This can help memory patients remain as independent as possible.

It strengthens the connection to the present. Individuals with dementia often live in the past and have difficulty comprehending the present. Socialization can bring a sense of normal order and structure to life and helps the brain connect to the here and now.

It’s important to make sure that any engagement or socialization opportunities are introduced with care in order to not make the individual with dementia feel threatened or confused. Start small and focus on activities that may have held great meaning for your loved one in the past. Be patient and understanding and introduce new activities or people in a nurturing and safe environment. Remember that even small things can play a huge role in happiness – even sitting down with your loved one and looking through a photo album can spark memories, encourage conversation and provide meaningful moments.

At Avalon, we understand the importance that socialization and engagement play in the lives of our residents. Each member of our community has the opportunity to participate in fun and varied social and recreational programing.  Residents enjoy exercise, gardening, baking, games, and other organized events on a regular basis. Robust activities help maintain communication skills, increase self-worth and enhance or maintain overall health.

These opportunities are just one way we keep our residents engaged and participating in life.  Our communities are designed for all individuals with memory issues and offer private apartments that can be decorated with your furniture and personal touches. By providing a welcoming, fun, engaging environment we ensure our communities truly feel like home.

Avalon offers memory care for individuals who have dementia or other cognitive issues. For information on Avalon and how we can help you or a loved one, please call us today at (972) 713-1383.

By |2019-03-29T08:49:56-05:00March 29th, 2019|Categories: Memory Care|0 Comments

Beginning in September 2021, Avalon will be initiating boosters for the COVID-19 vaccine for all staff and residents.
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