A dementia sufferer (DS) often feels lost and in control of nothing.  If possible, give your DS chores to do. Nothing complex, but something necessary and helpful: watering the animals, folding laundry, sweeping the floor, stirring a cake mix.  Ask him to do whatever he is comfortable with and capable of doing.  Humans need to feel useful to feel human. 

Assign chores that are not particularly time sensitive and do not involve fragile items, sharp instruments, harsh chemicals, or power tools.  If he can’t handle a given chore, find something different for him to do. Don’t make the mistake of re-doing his work before his eyes or criticizing it unnecessarily. The goal here is to restore dignity, not to diminish it.

Finally, give him praise and credit for completing the tasks.  Everyone wants to feel useful and appreciated and a DS maybe needs it more than most. 


Image credit: Diego Vito Cervo - 123RF 


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