It can be a challenge to choose a gift for someone with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. Whether you’re looking for a present for a birthday, Father’s Day, Christmas, or any other special occasion, these practical ideas can help you celebrate your loved one.
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- Visits: Make regular visits to the family that is caring for a person with Alzheimer’s disease.
- Hugs: People with Alzheimer’s disease miss being touched. Be generous with hugs — offer hugs to the caregiver, too.
- Music: CDs, tapes, music boxes, and other sources of music with music they enjoy can be calming.
- Books and magazines: Reading material with lots of colorful pictures and old familiar scenes can be a source of entertainment.
- Photo albums: Get treasured pictures enlarged to recall the early days.
- Movies: Look for videos from the 1940s through the ’80s.
- Food: Fresh fruit, cookies, ice cream, frozen meals, or home-cooked meals that can be frozen and used later are delicious and convenient.
- Clothes: Look for comfortable sweaters, “warm-up” suits, jackets with Velcro fastening, etc.
- Grooming products: Skin lotion, hair products, and aftershave make great gifts. (Make sure to find out your loved one’s favorite fragrances first!)
- Gift certificates: Consider purchasing a gift card for a beautician, pedicurist, barber, favorite restaurant, house cleaning service, cleaners, or to a play or movie.
- Respite: Offer respite to the caregiver.
- Assist with errands: Offer to do grocery shopping, post office, or any other needed errands for your loved one or their caregiver.
- Night light
- Electric razor
- Talking watch or clock
Learn more about celebrating holidays with someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia, visit The Alzheimer’s Caregiver® lesson on Traveling, Driving, Holidays, and Special Occasions.
This above gift list was adapted from the Caregiver Newsletter of the Duke Family Support Program, Fall, 1993.