Staying Active

Doing activities that are enjoyable and meaningful bring fulfillment to life, and can help individuals living with dementia to remain connected. Ideas on how to set up daily routines & activities that are just the right fit — and which draw out an individual’s strengths and inspiration — is the work of VHA’s Occupational Therapists (OT).

Physical activity has been shown to bring many benefits to people living with dementia, including slowing the progression of memory decline in the early phases. VHA’s Physiotherapists (and OTs) can help to set up exercise programming that maximizes the benefits this can bring.

Sometimes the help that is needed is another pair of knowledgeable and compassionate hands that can be there to do the activities with the person living with dementia. Personal Support Workers can motivate, engage and come with a basket of activities to try. This can also help bring some much needed respite to caregivers to catch up on other things or simply to rest.

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Exercising as well as doing day-to-day activities that require physical movement can improve memory, independence and overall well being. Watch these two short videos or download the information sheets to learn more:

  • Physical Activity & Cognition: Part 1 (7 min); Part 2 (10 min)
  • Physical Activity Information Sheet

Activation Therapy is a term used to describe the technique of engaging a person living with dementia in activities that they find soothing or meaningful. Modifying activities and changing the way it is presented can help people at any stage do things that bring fulfillment. Download VHA’s Activation Therapy Toolkit here.