DEDICATED TO IMPROVING THE LIVES OF BLIND AND VISUALLY IMPAIRED PEOPLE

In Recognition of Older Americans Month:

Arts and Crafts Suggestions for Seniors with Vision Challenges

Vision changes that occur as we age do not have to limit participation in arts and crafts activities, according to Opticall Eyecare, based in the UK. Some, like pottery for example, utilize tactile abilities that can shape art based on visual memory. Jewelry making with beads can be done using larger beads with larger openings and adaptations such as a beading needle, which is longer than regular sewing needles. Painting can be another fruitful option – and was for a number of famous painters with vision impairment, including Edgar Degas and Claude Monet. Knitting is also a creative pastime that can be enjoyed by those with limited or even no vision, using such adaptations as larger needles and tightly woven yarn that is easier to see and feel. For more details and tips.

Adapting Games and Recreation to Changes in Vision

Older adults with vision loss can continue to play the same board and other games they enjoyed earlier in life. Some companies offer adaptive versions of popular games, like Monopoly, checkers, dominoes and Scrabble and large-print playing cards. Many people with low vision do not need adaptations, however, depending on the game, how much contrast and lighting as well as tactile elements are available and the extent of vision loss. More information is available from VisionAware about  “Recreational Activities for Seniors with Visual Impairments.” Read about it here.

Activities and Tips for Caregivers of Seniors with Low Vision Who Have Dementia or Alzheimer’s

Although regular activity is key to stimulating cognition and memory in older adults, finding such activities for those with vision loss and dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease can be extra challenging. Music, audiobooks and radio shows, chair exercise and other modified movement, and animal therapy are among the recommendations outlined by the caregiver website DailyCaring. Detailed suggestions and links to helpful websites provide guidance in introducing beneficial and entertaining activities, such as memory-boosting songs, exercises that improve circulation, and involvement in household tasks like preparing vegetables for cooking, to name a few. Activities are organized into nine categories for easy reference. Read more about it here.