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Tactile Stimulation for Seniors with Dementia–Kingston

Our experience of the things around us is heavily informed by our senses, one of which is the sense of touch. The practice of Tactile Stimulation is something that can help seniors with Dementia to connect to their sense of touch and, therefore, to elements of the world around them in a way that can be helpful psychologically, emotionally, and cognitively. What is Tactile Stimulation? Tactile Stimulation is, in essence, simply making a purposeful use of physical things to foster a connectedness to the sense of touch. Interaction with items of different textures, shapes, sizes, and feelings can help individuals relate to their sense of touch and to things that surround them in their everyday lives. Tactile Stimulation and Dementia Individuals living with the realities of Dementia often face sensory difficulties that can impact their experience of daily life in meaningful ways. Using Tactile Stimulation to help seniors with Dementia better connect with their sense of touch can help play a role is adjusting to some of the facets of life that come along with Dementia. The Benefits Many seniors with Dementia face things like isolation, anxiety, nervousness, sadness, confusion, and other negative emotions that can take their toll. The integration of Tactile Stimulation into seniors’ routines has the potential to help to address and ease the intensity of some of these problems in various areas. Emotional: Tactile Stimulation can foster a boost in mood and a chance to interact and express oneself in a way that can help to improve emotional health and self-esteem. Engaging with things in a tactile way can also help to create a sense...

How Aromatherapy Can Help Support Seniors’ Wellbeing – Kingston

Scent is a sense so connected to how we feel and engage with the world. When it comes to self-care, there are certain forms of soothing things that we know can help us feel better. When we want to feel a certain way, we make use of things that help us get there. A favourite song, a warm cosy blanket, a beautiful view; these are all things that tap into our senses and make us feel better. Sense of smell is a powerful sense, and surrounding oneself with different scents can really contribute to creating a certain mood or feel. Aromatherapy takes the knowledge of how powerful scent can be, and channels it into a form of therapy for the body, mind, and soul. What is Aromatherapy? Aromatherapy is an alternative therapy that makes purposeful use of various aromatic plant properties in the form of essential oils. Aromatherapy aims to improve a person’s state of wellbeing through bettering their mood or helping to sooth certain symptoms of ill-health. Aromatherapy is an incredibly accessible way to engage in self-care and work towards promoting a better state of wellbeing. While there are many specialized places to receive Aromatherapy treatments and services, incorporating Aromatherapy into seniors’ lives can be as simple as using candles at home or choosing bath and shower products with the rights scents and oils in them. When we think of Aromatherapy, relaxation is often the first thing that comes to mind. It is absolutely true that Aromatherapy is an incredible tool for promoting relaxation and an overall sense of calm, but different smells do different things and it...

Occupational Therapy for Seniors – Kingston

Seniors dealing with new realities in older age might find Occupational Therapy helpful. Occupational Therapy can help seniors to better deal with challenges and make arrangements that support them as they continue living independent and enriching lives. What is Occupational Therapy? Occupational Therapy (OT) is a type of therapy that helps individuals continue to live full, productive, and independent lives by strengthening their ability to perform important activities or ‘occupations’. Occupational Therapy differs from Physical Therapy because OT focuses on cultivating and strengthening the ability to perform daily tasks or activities, while Physical Therapy (PT) focuses on improving physical mobility. The overall goal that exists in Occupational Therapy is to help in the process of building up better self-reliance by working through physical challenges and making environmental adjustments to provide seniors with the best opportunities to continue to take part in the everyday activities that give them a sense of independence, empowerment, and fulfillment in their lives. How Seniors Can Benefit from Occupational Therapy Every senior has their own personal set of needs, goals, and challenges that differ based on their personal circumstances. Occupational Therapy involves a process of identifying areas of need and working with the Occupational Therapist to determine how best to build and support independence. The following are a few examples of the areas of seniors’ lives that Occupational Therapy can target: Fall Prevention: Falls are some of the most prevalent causes of injury for seniors, and Occupational Therapists can help seniors to find the best tools, practices, and strategies to help prevent falls. Whether this be through home adjustments or physical practices, Occupational Therapy can...

Creativity as Therapy: Art and Music for Seniors’ Wellbeing – Kingston

When caring for an ageing loved one, we direct a lot of attention towards making sure that their physical and medical needs are met and attended to. We arrange medical visits, monitor medications, and help with physical and mental exercises prescribed by health-care professionals, all in pursuit of the ultimate goal of maximizing and maintaining the health of the seniors we care about. While these medically focused activities are undoubtedly of pivotal importance, there are also many other forms of non-medical engagement and creative therapies that can have incredibly meaningful impacts upon seniors’ well-being. Alternative and Creative Therapies Alternative and creative therapies are often overlooked because of the fact that they exist largely outside of the bio-medical realm, but looking into creatively driven therapies involving art, music, games, animals, and other hobby related activities can yield huge benefits for many of the seniors who take part in these forms of therapy. The extensive array of alternative and creative therapies that have been made available to seniors over recent decades, including in the Kingston area, is as diverse and varied as the people for whom these therapies were designed. Among some of the more popular creative therapies are those that are art based, such as those that involve music and visual art. Music Therapy Music Therapy is founded on the notion that music can be used as a powerful tool to improve the well-being of seniors by engaging all facets of their being. Listening to, or being part of the creation of music has the ability to awaken and engage emotional, mental, spiritual, social, and physical aspects of identity, and...

The Therapeutic Power of Animals – Kingston

While working our way through the aging process and learning to better manage and navigate the challenges and changes that come along with growing old, finding little sources of comfort and calm is deeply valuable for our mental health and, by extension, our overall wellbeing. Each of us finds their comfort in different places, whether it be reading, art, music, or other hobbies, and one incredible option worth exploring is the therapeutic effect of animals. Animal Assisted Therapy is a unique type of therapy that can be deeply enriching and beneficial for seniors in any condition, and can be a fun and calming way to work towards a better state of wellbeing. What is Animal Assisted Therapy? Animal Assisted Therapy, also known as Pet Therapy, is a unique form of therapy that uses the calming effect of animals in a purposeful and directed way as a means of treatment. The overarching goal of Animal Assisted Therapy is to help seniors experience a better quality of life, emotionally, socially, psychologically, and cognitively. How Animals Can Help Time spent with animals has been seen to be truly beneficial for many seniors in ways that can work to improve both mental and physical states of health. Studies have shown that even a short amount of time spent interacting or bonding with an animal can instantly improve mood and lower blood pressure. Among some of the many benefits that have been associated with spending some time with animals are: Decreases Anxiety and Stress Decreases Feelings of Isolation Improves Motor Skills or Mobility, from petting or walking animals Increases Levels of Engagement, drawing reserved...