Conversation cards for dementia
Free conversation cards for carers of people living with dementia
We have developed a set of free conversation cards to support relatives, friends and carers, to build social connections and engage in meaningful conversations with people who are living with dementia.
All too often the families and friends of people diagnosed with dementia can feel alone and worried, knowing that the relationship with their loved one is going to change. It can sometimes be hard to know what to say or do when spending social time with someone whose needs or situation have changed so significantly. For staff working with older people, being able to know a person’s life history and form a relationship with them are key to providing high quality care.
A way to share memories
These new conversation cards help people to live well with dementia by supporting their sense of identity and social contact, as well as providing an enjoyable way to share special memories and experiences together. The free resource contains pages of illustrations and ideas that people can use as conversation prompts. Simple questions are themed around specific interests like gardening, school, travel and music; topics to which everyone can relate to.
Families reported that the questions “prompted humour, memory-searching, emotion but mostly pleasure and pride” (Janet, wife of Pete who is living with dementia). They allowed people to find out more about a person’s life and feel closer to them at a time when, so often, families feel like they are losing the person they knew.
Care staff too said the cards allowed them to provide better person-centred care and activity, by forming closer relationships and an appreciation of each individual’s rich life. “They have helped me to find out more information which we have been able to record on CMS. All staff then have access to more information about these residents.” Sally Harper, Activities Coordinator, Waypoints Care.
Designed by experts
With over 60 years combined experience providing creative arts sessions for older people, and training for their care staff, Alive are experts in communicating with people living with dementia. We've drawn on this experience to develop this set of easy to use conversation cards to enable anyone to connect with people living with the disease.
Academic research shows as little as 10 minutes of social interaction per day can have a positive impact on people’s wellbeing.