While there is currently no cure for dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, there are quite a few holistic practices that can help lessen the behaviors associated with dementia. One of these that are quickly gaining in popularity is actually aromatherapy. Aromatherapy can do wonders for bolstering the quality of life for memory care residents, including those who reside at our Elkhorn memory care community.
Below, we take a deeper look at aromatherapy, what it is, how it can help those living with dementia, and even a few easy ways you can incorporate essential oils into your daily routine. Keep reading to get all the details!
What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is an ancient practice that harnesses the power of essential oils to promote physical, emotional, and mental well-being. These natural oils are derived from plants and have been used for centuries to improve various aspects of health. Some of the most commonly used essential oils include peppermint, lavender, citrus, and rosemary, though there are certainly many other options to choose from. At Symphony Pointe, a premier Elkhorn memory care community, we encourage residents to engage in many different holistic health practices, including aromatherapy.
6 Memory Care Benefits
Now that you have a little bit of background information regarding aromatherapy, it’s time to delve into why exactly it is so helpful to those living with dementia:
1. Enhanced Cognitive Function
One of the remarkable benefits of aromatherapy in memory care is its ability to boost cognitive function. Essential oils like rosemary and peppermint have been shown to stimulate the mind, improve concentration, and enhance memory recall. Residents in our Elkhorn memory care communities can benefit from diffusing these oils in communal areas or incorporating them into their daily routines.
2. Reduced Anxiety and Stress
It is no secret that those who have dementia commonly experience a heightened sense of stress and anxiety. Being able to manage this can do wonders to improve the overall quality of life for memory care residents. The good news is that aromatherapy is a powerful tool in reducing anxiety and stress levels in those living with Alzheimer’s disease. Lavender, chamomile, and frankincense are popular essential oils known for their calming properties. Diffusing these oils or using them in bath bombs can help create a tranquil environment, promoting relaxation and emotional well-being among our residents.
3. Improved Sleep Patterns
Many individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease struggle with sleep disturbances. Sleepless nights can compound and cause other issues, including increased anxiety. Aromatherapy can help address this issue by using essential oils such as lavender and cedarwood, which are renowned for their sleep-inducing qualities. By incorporating these oils into bedtime routines through room sprays or diffusers, you can provide a more restful night’s sleep for memory care residents.
4. Enhanced Mood and Emotional Balance
Aromatherapy is a wonderful way to uplift mood and maintain emotional balance. Citrus oils like orange and lemon can provide an invigorating and cheerful atmosphere. Residents in our Elkhorn memory care communities can enjoy these scents through diffusers or room sprays, promoting a positive outlook on life.
5. Sensory Stimulation
If you want a safe way to engage sensory stimulation, essential oils can be your best bet. Aromatherapy engages the senses, making it an excellent tool for sensory stimulation in memory care. Essential oils like eucalyptus, peppermint, and cinnamon can be used in various ways to provide sensory experiences that can trigger memories and improve overall cognitive function.
6. Pain Management
If you are looking for a holistic means to pain management, give aromatherapy a try. Essential oils can possibly aid in pain management for those living with Alzheimer’s disease. Oils such as lavender and eucalyptus have analgesic properties that can help alleviate discomfort. Residents can benefit from diluted topical applications or the use of aromatherapy massage.
How to Use Essential Oils in Memory Care
Now, let’s explore the different ways to use essential oils to maximize their benefits for residents in our Elkhorn memory care communities:
Diffusers are a popular choice for dispersing essential oils into the air. By adding a few drops of your chosen essential oil into the diffuser, you can create a soothing ambiance throughout the living spaces. This method is especially effective for enhancing cognitive function, reducing anxiety, and promoting better sleep.
Aromatherapy bath bombs provide a luxurious and therapeutic bathing experience. Simply drop an aromatherapy-infused bath bomb into warm bathwater, and the essential oils will disperse, enveloping the resident in a calming and aromatic soak. This method is excellent for relaxation, mood enhancement, and sensory stimulation.
Room sprays are a quick and convenient way to infuse living spaces with the pleasant scents of essential oils. A few spritzes can instantly transform the atmosphere, making it ideal for creating a calming environment or promoting an uplifted mood.
Personal inhalers are portable and discreet tools that allow residents to inhale the beneficial aromas of essential oils whenever needed. They can be customized with specific blends to address individual preferences and therapeutic goals.
Massage therapy is another effective way to incorporate essential oils into memory care. Diluted essential oils can be used by trained massage therapists to provide residents with soothing and therapeutic massages. The gentle touch and aroma of the oils can help alleviate tension, reduce pain, and promote relaxation, offering a holistic approach to well-being.
Make the Move to Elkhorn Memory Care
As you have come to learn, aromatherapy is a powerful and versatile tool that offers numerous benefits to those living with Alzheimer’s disease, including residents of our Elkhorn memory care community. By incorporating essential oils into their daily routines through diffusers, bath bombs, room sprays, and personal inhalers, we aim to provide a sensory-rich experience that promotes cognitive, emotional, and physical well-being.
At Symphony Pointe, we are dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for our residents through holistic and compassionate care. To learn more about our beautiful community or to schedule a tour, be sure to contact us today!