When your family members grow older or have a variety of health issues, you may be faced with watching them suffer with memory problems.
While people may suffer with memory issues due to stress, mental health issues or nutritional imbalances, dementia is when memory loss becomes worse over time. As families go through this…watching someone suffer with dementia, often due to Alzheimer’s Disease, it can be devastating.
Getting help for dementia can be tough, but it’s important for everyone in the family to have ways to cope with such a situation.
While it’s not the only answer to getting help for dementia, doll therapy and dementia go hand in hand.
If you’re wondering what is doll therapy, read on!
The Power of Empathy Dolls
What are Empathy dolls?
Empathy dolls are dolls that are used in doll therapy. Whether for young children or adults, dolls can bring comfort in times of fear or stress.
And let’s face it: if you’re losing your memory and starting to get glimpses that this is happening to you, it can be frightening.
Someone suffering with dementia may be dealing with the following symptoms:
- Inability to remember appointments and phone messages
- Unable to remember names or places, even of people they love and know well
- Irritability on not knowing where he or she placed certain items
- Frustration at not remembering
- Expressing frustration with others
But it’s not only difficult on the person dealing with this progressive memory loss. It’s also scary to your family members. They may worry about you wandering off…they may worry about you not remembering important events, medication directions and more. Whatever the case may be, severe memory loss is incredibly difficult. Your family members may also “miss” the way you once were and it can be sad to watch the change.
Typically, when it comes to dementia, these dolls are used to provide comfort for people who are suffering with severe memory loss or the family members who love them. The best kind of empathy doll may even be a personalized doll that looks and sounds like loved family members or even him or her!
You could do a variety of things, like:
- Make a doll that reminds the dementia patient of an important loved family member. Whether it’s a personalized doll with a photo face or one that had a recordable message saying positive loving words for the person.
- Make a doll for a child “missing” a grandparent who has changed significantly due to dementia. Perhaps the doll has grandma’s face via photo or a message just of grandma saying hi. Children especially may not understand why the change in a grandparent.
A personalized empathy doll could be made to look like a favorite pet even…a lost family member…
Whether it’s through the doll’s design or through a recordable message or photo, do not discount the power of dolls.
At any age, these dolls can provide a hug and comfort when are loved ones are not with us or are simply stressed.
The reality is the power of a hug from a loved one or a comfort doll is truly transformative in any difficult situation!