Me2U Centre will soon be introducing a sensory garden for clients to enjoy. Gardening therapy is a must have for any institution catering for people with dementia, as there are so many benefits to be had.
Being close to nature is something we all crave at one time or another, and sadly, according to the Alzheimer’s Society, people over retirement age and those living with a disability tend to go to go to parks and other natural open areas less frequently than the population as a whole.
This why setting up gardening clubs and providing sensory gardens with activities tailored to those with dementia is not a choice or a luxury, but an essential for the Me2U Centre.
What the studies say
A study was carried out by an organisation called Thrive, who ran gardening groups for people with young onset dementia over the course of a year. In this time, it was noted that gardening activities may have an improvement on wellbeing. Six months into the study, carers noted that the patients seemed to be given a renewed sense of purpose, they felt a sense of companionship and their awareness of what day it was seemed to be better. In most cases, carers believed that things like mood, concentration, memory and sociability remained the same after twelve months.The study was carried out on a small group, and so findings are not conclusive, but signals where positive.
Other academics have drawn attention to advantages such as such as improvement in day to day life, less stress and lower instances of agitation when patients have been participating in a gardening activity. Other studies have reported enhanced communication skills and other cognitive abilities among study participants. There is reason in the academic community to believe that, by taking part in gardening, patients may retain their memories and sleep better.
If your loved one has always enjoyed being outside, you can make time for gardening and outdoor activity despite their disease. Being engaged in any activity can only enhance their life.
Experts believe that gardening can be beneficial for the following reasons:
- Being outside gives you more energy.
- More exposure to sunlight means more Vitamin D, which helps your bones.
- A lower level of anxiety and stress
- An opportunity to engage with something interesting
- More chance to socialise so people do not become isolated
- A feeling of independence
- A chance to recall old memories
- Better quality of sleep
Gardening therapy is one of the many therapies we offer here at Me2U Centre. Clients can enjoy a wealth of stimulating activities when they spend a day with us. To speak to one of our staff or to book a session, please call: 07888 649822.