This year, the Christmas season will have more significance than ever before.  Even though we only missed out on one festive period, it feels like a lot longer than two years since we were all safely able to be together for Christmas. All being well, this year should be a wonderful time where we finally get to cuddle loved ones, gather all the generations together and also visit loved ones in care homes!

At the Dementia Network, we are all really looking forward to making this year extra special and this includes our gift giving! Our elves have put together these great gift ideas for friends and family living with Dementia.

  1. If you can’t be with your loved one every day, why not ensure you’re still close to them, bringing them warmth and comfort by creating a personalised photo blanket. With different designs available, you can add multiple pictures of friends and family to bring a smile to their face all year round. These ones come in plush velvet and sherpa fleece: Personalised Throw. Photo Thrown Handmade to Order in London, UK
  2. Fiddle Muffs are a brilliant way to keep fingers occupied and bring a sense of calm if your loved one becomes agitated. If you’re feeling crafty, you could create your own personalised muff with items and pictures that might mean something to the recipient, or if you’re all fingers and thumbs when it comes to arts and crafts then do not panic, there are plenty to choose from online. We think this one Fiddle Muff Comforter looks bright and engaging and offers great value for money too.
  3. Combining both ideas of a blanket and a fiddle muff is this great Sensory Lap Blanket, from Caroline Crewe Designs on Etsy. The blanket can be personalised in both design and name, and comes packed full of beautiful detail. They are lovingly hand made and would make the perfect gift for both sexes.
  4. A fun and beneficial gift idea, are the brilliantly innovative Jelly Drops – the award-winning sweets designed to boost hydration. They’re 95% water, sugar free and vegan with a fantastic, solid but smooth texture! They come in an assortment of colours and flavours and look just like sweets but they’re a brilliant way to boost the water intake of someone who is struggling to keep hydrated. You can order a one off box or organise an ongoing subscription for the year.
  5. Jogging the memory of a person with dementia is a great way to open up conversations and engage with them on their level. The Memory Lane books are created with large 18pt print, they have short, easy to follow paragraphs and plenty of full colour illustrations. The books look at everyday life in the decade, in both Britain and the USA, including film, sports, fashion and music. The 40s, 50s and 60s are all currently available on Amazon to buy as a set or individually.
  6. Safe and easy arts and crafts ideas can be hard to find, but this art set from Relish art activities are specifically developed to boost independence and nurture the minds of elderly people living with dementia and Alzheimers. The pack contains five vibrant images printed on reusable canvas. After each use, the paper image fades back to white to become fully reusable. The paintings appear once water is applied with the paintbrush, so there is nothing to clear up afterwards and no need for paint.
  7. Staying with the arts and crafts theme, Colouring Book For Adults With Dementia is an excellent art therapy book for individuals with dementia. The book is packed with 35 beautiful drawings designed to bring back special memories, subjects include; the 1960s, flowers, nature, birds, animals, people and delicious food. Colouring is a great way to relax and pictures that bring back memories can encourage reminiscence and conversation.

However you celebrate this year and whatever gift you decide to give, we know that just being present is the best gift of all.