By Helen Lambert (DK) 

Waterstones, £16.99 (hardback) 

A brilliant little book for those living with dementia and memory loss, this is a book of activities designed by a specialist that can help entertain and amuse your loved one, as well as crucially giving them a bit of a cerebral workout. And with the threat of a second lockdown and colder weather imminent, the Memory Activity Book is certainly a good bet for the long months indoors. 

Using step-by-step ideas, dementia care specialist Helen Lambert explains how engaging in a variety of simple activities can benefit different parts of the brain and help to keep your mind fitter for longer. The book is designed to be used by a wide range of people including friends and relatives, as well as people at different stages of dementia. Each activity contains hints and tips that not only show you how to do it, but also include ways to adapt the various physical exercises, games, and craft projects. 

The book includes more than 70 activities for interests ranging from music and gaming to art and gardening. Readers have praised the focus on ‘what you can do rather than what you cannot do, while the author also encourages you to not discount activities that could involve a slight risk.

Maintaining a variety of interests helps to reduce social isolation and encourages loved ones to remain physically active. This in turn could help to avoid depression. The book encourages readers to keep a balance between self-care, productivity and leisure. 

The author, Helen Lambert, is an occupational therapist with more than 25 years’ experience in the NHS, and now provides bespoke personal training courses for the social care sector. Driven by the memory of her grandmother, Lambert is passionate about using her personal and professional experience to improve the care of the elderly and is committed to supporting all who live with dementia – both those who have been diagnosed, and the families and friends around them.