My Mood Stars! Yes…For the Elderly!
Of course! And why not? My Mood Stars do not discriminate against race, age or gender!
My Mood Stars are an ideal resource for our elderly experiencing the onset of dementia.
Why? Because it is widely known that the feel of something soft and tactile to hold evokes good feelings, memories and comfort.
Sensory toys for dementia patients can bring great enjoyment for people with cognitive loss helping memory and thinking.
When I asked Jean, 82 years old, what she thought as she stroked Happy Star, she said that it reminded her of the blanket that was on her bed as a child!
I gave my mother a set of My Mood Stars as a communication tool when she lost her speech. The Mood Stars represent different moods and emotions so my mum could express how she was feeling with the Stars.
She could tell me if she was happy for example when Shane Lowry won the Open or sad when her favourite celebrity left Strictly! She would wave Angry Star at me when she couldn’t do simple tasks like opening a new milk! And Worried Star would come out, usually if I had an imminent long drive or a doctor’s appointment – mums never stop worrying do they?!
What is Cognitive Loss?
As people age, they begin to lose their basic cognitive skills such as the the ability to process information. They might complain about loud music or noise as it prevents their concentration. They may have difficulty learning new things or/and making decisions that affect their daily routine.
More severe, levels of cognitive loss can lead to losing the ability to understand the meaning or importance of something and the ability to talk or write, which may result in the inability to live an independent life.
This can also result in a feeling of frustration and worthlessness which in turn can lead to anxiety and depression.
As we live a lot longer these days there are more people experiencing mild to severe dementia.
There Is Support
From talking to people from the Care sector I have found that there is a lot of support for our elderly whether at home or in a residential care.
The benefits of play, social interaction, movement, and quizzes are all celebrated with companies like Bright Copper Kettles CIC where I met Caroline J Benham through Linkedin.
Caroline writes “My passion for improving the opportunities for activity in later years and, in particular, for those with dementia has grown from my personal experiences caring for my grandmother. I learned so much from my ‘Nanny’ both before and after her dementia diagnosis. And it is with grateful thanks to her that Bright Copper Kettles CIC continues to flourish and inspire others.”
Caroline helps care home managers support their activity coordinators with training, mentorship and resources for planning meaningful, person-centred, care home activities.
On my journey exploring Care homes and activities for our older adults, I met Louise Coleman from Messy-Senses
Louise offers bespoke sensory sessions for the elderly with complex healthcare needs. Louise has over 20 years experience in working alongside the elderly, with dementia and Alzheimer’s, in both a professional and personnel capacity, and is a Cognitive Stimulation Therapy facilitator.
From another wonderful website, Laura Jessica Walker offers support and advice at Memory Matters who are champions of Cognitive Stimulation Therapy (CST); a therapy proven to slow the progression of dementia and increase quality of life.
So What Are My Mood Stars?
My Mood Stars are eight plush hand-sized ish Stars that feel so good to hold. Each Star depicts a different mood/emotion.
Originally designed for children on the autism spectrum but have grown and evolved to meet the needs of all ages and abilities and that’s why I believe that they are such a wonderful resource for our older generation.
As I said before, My Mood Stars are a highly effective communication tool and a lovely toy to hold and stroke.
The My Mood Stars come with an activity download full of Cognitive stimulation sessions for the elderly
Download and print your own
My Mood Stars activity sheet here…
My Mood Stars are available here: