As you may already know, it’s extremely important for older adults living with dementia to constantly engage in brain activities. This is because by stimulating the minds, they’re able to build up healthy brain cells and increase the production of nerve cell connections, which help prevent further cognitive decline. While there are many activities your loved ones can participate in, we particularly recommend creative writing. In fact, many healthcare professionals have advocated for writing activities for years. As such, there’s no doubt it’s an effective method to slow down and prevent dementia. Here are the benefits of writing for dementia.
Most of the time, older adults living with dementia tend to lose self-esteem and self-confidence as they find themselves unable to complete tasks and responsibilities. This eventually will cause them to doubt their own abilities to accomplish something or even go about being independent. However, just by participating in creative writing, they’re given a safe and non-judgemental way to jot down their own thoughts. Regardless if your loved ones are looking to share their journals or not, creative writing provides an escape for them and encourages them to be confident in themselves.
Stimulate Cognitive Function
As mentioned above, in order to reduce the symptoms of dementia, older adults should constantly seek to engage their minds and stay mentally healthy. Since creative writing requires the brain to be engaged and think outside the box, your loved ones’ cognitive function will undoubtedly improve over time. You’ll soon find that they’re more capable to process information quickly, and are more alert, sharp, and observant. What’s more, if an older adult prefers to write about him or herself and reminisce about the past, this is even better as they can retrieve their core memories.
Improve Mental Health
It has been medically and scientifically proven that writing helps to calm the mind and relieve negative emotions. As such, this is why many people consider creative writing as a hobby during their free time and an activity to do whenever they’re feeling anxious or upset. How creative writing improves mental health is that it encourages the person to directly combat intrusive thoughts, which in turn allows them to overcome these negative experiences and feelings instead of neglecting them. In addition, writing has been said to promote the production of endorphins in our bodies, a chemical that makes us feel happy and relaxed.
Boost Social Interaction
Many retirement communities like Discovery Village At Dominion offer writing classes for residents to join. Whether your loved ones are looking to improve their writing or have some guidance on where to start, they are highly encouraged to participate in these programs as they provide an opportunity for them to mingle with other like-minded residents. Unfortunately, it’s common for many older adults with dementia to be socially isolated from society, causing them to become lonely. This can bring about many negative effects on their physical and mental health, so it’s important for them to socialize and head outdoors, if possible.