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Exercise for Adults With Alzheimer’s: Ideas for Each Stage

CareFor shares ways to explore exercise for adults with Alzheimer’s disease.

The countless benefits of physical exercise are obvious, but what is not as well known is that exercise for adults with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia can be particularly helpful in a variety of ways. It can help lessen the risk for muscle weakness as well as other issues that arise from inactivity, can minimize the impact of psychological and behavioral changes, and even more. 

At CareFor, as the leading provider of senior home care services in Austin, TX and the surrounding areas, we recommend that anyone beginning a new exercise regime should first consult a doctor. Then, try integrating more physical activity into each day for a senior loved one with dementia, using the following tips in accordance with each individual’s capabilities and the appropriate stage associated with the disease:

First Stages

Seniors in the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s can enjoy relatively active and social exercises, including things like golf, swimming, dancing, bowling, and walking, although some degree of guidance and oversight may be needed. Over time, increased supervision will likely be necessary as the disease progresses.

Mid to Later Stages

The middle to later phases of Alzheimer’s disease are often associated with higher levels of confusion and anxiety. For that reason, noisy or overly exciting activities should be avoided. Repetitious exercises, including indoor bicycling and walking, along with tasks like folding laundry, help to lessen anxiety levels as the senior does not need to make any choices regarding the activity or try to recall what to do next.

Advanced Stages

During the advanced stages of Alzheimer’s, children’s playthings may be well suited for promoting hand-eye coordination. These toys are often vibrantly colored, easy to hold, and are designed to stimulate the brain. In addition, stress balls or soft clay-like items can be squeezed to help strengthen the muscles in the hands.

CareFor’s care providers are fully trained and experienced in innovative, kind, and thoughtful care for seniors with Alzheimer’s disease or another kind of dementia, and we are always on hand to help families maximize wellness for the seniors they love. We are skilled in helping to successfully manage such difficult behaviors as sundowning, aggression, wandering, and more, and can offer overnight respite care to allow family caregivers to get a good night’s sleep while knowing their senior loved one is safe and secure. 

Reach out to us at (512) 338-4533 to find out more about our professional in-home dementia care, or to request more tips and resources specific to the challenges you are facing. We’re pleased to offer senior home care services in Austin, TX and surrounding communities that helps keep those with dementia safe at home.

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