Friday, September 24, 2010

More thoughts on reminiscence therapy...

First thing I had to ask myself was what reminiscence therapy was. As a caregiver, I'm learning a lot of new terms. Google gets a workout on my computer as I try to figure all this stuff out, and if the idea seems helpful for caregivers, I try to post about it here.

Evidently, a main form of reminiscence therapy is using a care receiver's photographs to give them good things to think about. You can create a wall of photos that they see when they wake up, or you can make an album. I've written before about making a digital photo frame for Mama, and that a photo album she can hold and carry around works better for her. Probably has something to do with her age, as books are more familiar and comfortable than electronic gadgets that she doesn't understand (and is afraid she'll break somehow).

Today I read an article on EldercareABCBlog about seniors and their memories, and wanted to post it for you here. I liked how this author shared what had happened with his mom and himself, and how he eventually realized what made those long-ago photos so precious to his mom.

The article's author, Bob Kohut, says, "It seems to me one of the biggest problems those of us who find ourselves in senior caregiver roles have is the fact we have no experience of what it’s like to be old." Bob's article helped me to better understand why Mama clings to the past and loves to talk about it constantly.

Good food for thought for me, as Mama has been pulling out photos more often and has created a collection for me to do something with, complete with her notes about the who and when in each group. She's more and more interested in photos of her growing-up years and early married life. I definitely plan to make her a small album for Christmas. And I also plan to sit down and have her tell me the stories for each picture...even though I've heard them many times before.

Here's the article: What'sWrongWithSeniorsClingingToTheirMemories?

A few days ago, Bob had another article about reminiscing, and I wanted to share it also. The bottom line is that remembering the good times is good medicine for our seniors. ReminiscingWithYourSeniorLovedOnes--ItWorks

Do you have a story about how photographs have helped your care receiver? (Isn't there a better term than care receiver?) If so, please share it here. I'd love to learn from you.

Caregiver at Home

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