Therapy dolls offer dementia comfort

Responding to dementia research, Madeira Lodge Care Home introduced therapy dolls into home life activities to promote feelings of relaxation and pleasure for those living with dementia.

Dementia UK share guidance about using therapy dolls stating, ‘lifelike dolls or soft toy animals can have great benefits for some people with dementia, particularly in the later stages.’ Testing this, Madeira Lodge were eager to see if the benefits could be realised in their own home.

Sarah Pennington, Manager at Madeira Lodge Care Home says: “We had heard so many good things about the positive reaction to lifelike dolls that we really wanted those we care for and support to have the opportunity to experience them too.The feedback has been amazing to see. Immediately we could see the sense of tranquility in some, and excitement in others, as they held the doll and rocked it or cuddled it.”

Using lifelike dolls can promote feelings of relaxation and pleasure Dementia UK state ‘holding or just being with a doll can be particularly helpful for people who are withdrawn, restless, distressed or anxious, improving their wellbeing and ability to communicate’.

Sarah continues to say: “The dolls seemed to have a soothing effect on people, may be lost in their own memories of holding their own babies. You could see a sense of pride they had in taking charge of the new bundle.”

Belmont Healthcare offers multiple forms of long or short, respite and day care, or at home care for those in need of support.  Specialising in enhanced care and support of older people, care is also offered for those living with Dementia and other life changing conditions such as Parkinson’s disease. Our homes are perfectly situated in delightful settings around the UK and provide a very homely atmosphere whilst being safe and secure making the people we care for feel right at home.

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