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Keeping Busy: A Handbook of Activities for Persons with Dementia Paperback – May 1, 1995


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Keeping Busy: A Handbook of Activities for Persons with Dementia + Creating Moments of Joy for the Person with Alzheimer's or Dementia: A Journal for Caregivers, Fourth Edition + Learning to Speak Alzheimer's: A Groundbreaking Approach for Everyone Dealing with the Disease
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press; 1 edition (May 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801850592
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801850592
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #116,507 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

James Dowling's important goal in Keeping Busy is to provide hands-on information for truly therapeutic activities for persons with dementia. He has succeeded brilliantly and made a substantial contribution to the field. Dowling describes a series of activities designed to reduce problem behaviors and give meaning to life. They do not require expensive gadgets, elaborate preparation, or special training. Here is a sound theory, genuine compassion for impaired people, and a wonderful sense of the joy of life.

(Nancy Mace, author of The 36-Hour Day)

While little can be done for the disease of dementia itself, much can be done to help direct the quality of life of the persons with the disease, and Keeping Busy succeeds in providing ideas for improving the quality of life for the Alzheimer patient.

(American Journal of Alzheimer's Disease)

Provides detailed information about programming activities and developing an atmosphere that is responsive to patients with dementia. Topics include exercise, horticulture, communication, pets, humor, social events, and music. Each description include the rationale for the activity and some of the trial and error involved in developing the activity. Colorful anecdotes enliven the text and illustrate both successes and limitations.

(Connections from the Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral Center)

A practical, compassionate book that offers a variety of activities for people with dementia that can help improve their quality of life... The books closes with an appendix of 'good catalogs' that offer resources for caregivers of people with cognitive impairments or dementia.

(OT Week)

Review

"James Dowling's important goal in Keeping Busy is to provide hands-on information for truly therapeutic activities for persons with dementia. He has succeeded brilliantly and made a substantial contribution to the field. Dowling describes a series of activities designed to reduce problem behaviors and give meaning to life. They do not require expensive gadgets, elaborate preparation, or special training. Here is a sound theory, genuine compassion for impaired people, and a wonderful sense of the joy of life." -- Nancy Mace, author of The 36-Hour Day

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

This book is full of great ideas and concepts.
Laura J. Anderson
I found this to be one of the best books available to help me work with dementia patients.
Karen Gillis
It is full of useful tips and fun activities they can do together.
Pegleg the Pirate

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

132 of 134 people found the following review helpful By Anna Keller on September 7, 2001
Format: Paperback
It would have been useful to know, before purchasing this book, that most of the activities it describes are for use in group settings. As caregiver for a family member with dementia, I was hoping to find more material suited to one-on-one situations. While some of the activities can be adapted to the needs of individuals, the book as a whole doesn't provide much help for those living with a person who suffers from dementia.
It's unfortunate that the book's title doesn't make this clear.
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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful By "goldcoastreviews" on August 26, 2000
Format: Paperback
Look up dementia in the dictionary: from the Latin; out from the mind, severe mental deficiency or impairment. This can include anything from alzheimer patients to manic-depressives even obsessive-compulsion disorders. There is alot of that going around lately.
This activity book attempts to help those in need of finding positive outlets for frustrated energies. A place for a person to remember the good things, let the little things go and strive to move foreward.
Lacking was an effective way to work with these type of people. Just listing an activity, such as making a photo album, or writing a journal, still does not cover the enormous amount of patience one must have to direct one of dementia. Most of them are disabled and or retired and need therapy. This workbook alone could not do the trick. It might be of some help to people who must live around the demented. Thus 3 stars, thanks--CDS
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Format: Paperback
I'm an occupational therapist looking for specific ideas for activities that will interest dementia patients who can't participate in bingo and the other activities offered by a poorly run activities program in a typical nursing home. The dementia unit described in this book sounds wonderful, but not easily found in a long term care setting. Once again, I've found a book with great ideas that are impossible to carry out in the real world of long term care.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By jakub on November 23, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Because of the many phrases, songs, games that refer to things anyone born from 1910 to 1950 might remember, it was exceedingly fun and appropriate to go through things with my TBI husband. We laughed and said, Have to sing that for our grandchildren" and reminded each other of the answers. I could see the author's view of older people not wanting to do, say, art, then speaking of their brother who painted, and gradually having a wonderful time. I had occasion to refer this book to someone whose mother was just diagnosed, and I did so enthusiastically. Makes me wonder what the dementia patients who were born past the 70s will have that's as much fun as these old songs and cliches. The trick is to play WITH the patients and listen to their resulting stories--don't just throw the book their direction.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By JRS on February 18, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I work in an assisted living residence for people with dementia and our goal is to engage our residents all day in meaningful activities. It is very challenging and has great rewards. This book's title, Keeping Busy, almost made me pass it by because we are focused on more than just keeping our residents 'busy'...we want them to enjoy themselves, and in fact to 'flourish' in our environment. I am glad that I purchased it because it has many delightful activities that in fact do much more than just keep people 'busy'.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Hildajane on August 25, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an excellent resource for our
adult day center, which specializes in adults with Alzheimer's Disease and other dementias. In fact, it is so good that I re-ordered to get enough copies for each of our staff to have their own. It is our unofficial "textbook".
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By DrExistingMindfully on October 13, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It was a good book to give me some basics for my new job but it was limited for someone who is in the end of life field like I am.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Buyer on July 6, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After checking this book from the library, I purchsed a copy as a reference. The author gives practicle activities which enable the caregiver and the patient to survive dementia with dignity.

Other writings are more scientific and testimonial; This book gets us off our duff!
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Keeping Busy: A Handbook of Activities for Persons with Dementia
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