Plea to cre­ate games for de­men­tia suf­fer­ers

Coun­cil­lor says move would keep minds ac­tive

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Laura Mowat laura.mowat@trin­i­tymir­

SPE­CIALISED Snakes and Lad­ders is one idea to keep ac­tive the minds of de­men­tia suf­fer­ers.

Cam­paign­ers think more should be done for the grow­ing num­ber of such peo­ple.

Lit­tle Chal­font parish coun­cil­lor Janet Wal­ford, whose mother has the con­di­tion, be­lieves com­pa­nies should in­vent spe­cial­ist games for peo­ple with de­men­tia.

Mrs Wal­ford said: “There could be Snakes and Lad­ders for de­men­tia suf­fer­ers or the mak­ers of the game Candy Crush could make it with big­ger pieces.

“No­body makes th­ese games for peo­ple who have men­tal health prob­lems but they should do. The games would en­ter­tain them and keep them men­tally en­gaged.”

She added: “My mother would love some­thing like that and it would keep her mind en­gaged. They need to stim­u­late their minds or else they just sit around like vegetables.

“Over 30 per cent of adults to­day can ex­pect to have some form of de­men­tia be­fore they die, and the num­ber is in­creas­ing.

“It is a queue that we

(From left) Marie Shouler are po­ten­tially all stand­ing in. When think­ing about de­men­tia care, peo­ple should re­mem­ber this could be them in a few years, or some­one close to them.”

Man­ager of the Wood­lands Park Cen­tre in Great Mis­senden, Marie Shouler, who has been short­listed for the Na­tional De­men­tia Care Per­son­al­ity award, thinks it is about a shift in at­ti­tude.

The cen­tre pro­vides support for peo­ple with de­men­tia, of­fer­ing ac­tiv­i­ties such as cook­ing and paint­ing.

Mrs Shouler said: “I think it is im­por­tant that peo­ple in the com­mu­nity are more pa­tient to­wards de­men­tia suf­fer­ers.”

She hopes to run work­shops for peo­ple in Great Mis­senden so they un­der­stand how to deal with those with de­men­tia.

The Alzheimer’s So­ci­ety of­fers free ac­tiv­i­ties such as de­men­tia cafes with speak­ers and a pro­gramme where de­men­tia suf­fer­ers come to­gether to sing.

De­men­tia support worker Caro­line Ar­net­tWil­sher said: “The ac­tiv­i­ties can make a huge dif­fer­ence, we have had to start a wait­ing list for the singing as it is so popular.

“It stim­u­lates long-term mem­ory.”

Pho­tos con­trib­uted


and Janet Wal­ford

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