Here’s a question: Why do the characters in “Karate Kid” or any kung-Fu flick begin their training by repeatedly practicing a cognitive routine?
Well, the cognitive activity helps in boosting the brain’s function, which has positive effects on the overall body.
Busy boards were designed initially to do the same for toddlers, but you may not be aware that they can help dementia patients in various ways.
What is a Busy Board?
A busy board is a simple plank of wood with attached zippers, locks and door hinges; items that we come across and use on a daily basis.
Repeatedly practicing on these everyday items help dementia patients slow down the process of cognition and functional deterioration in their brain.
Although the boards have overly simple functions, activities like these can actually reinforce memory skills among senior Alzheimer patients, while providing important cognition and physical stimulation.
Providing engaging activities for Alzheimer and dementia patients has always been a challenge for both family members and elderly home caregivers.
With time, dementia leads to behavioral and psychological complications, which requires patients to be under regular supervision of their family and caregivers. Challenges like these have raised the need for self-engaging activities for Alzheimer and dementia patients, and busy boards came to the rescue.
How Busy Boards Became Popular
When the use of busy boards started showing signs of increased success of cognitive development among the elderly patients, the solution saw a sudden rise in popularity. Simple everyday item activities via these boards have greatly helped patients improve muscle strength and hand control.
Moreover, signs of improvement in cognitive development, awareness and motor skills have helped the elderly counter the symptoms of dementia and continue to maintain continuity in their lives. Their relaxed state of mind and concentration on the busy boards has helped them become less of a burden on their caregivers.
So, if you are a family member or a caregiver for any dementia patients and can relate to any of the challenges mentioned above, why not give this simple invention a try?
Busy boards are very easy to assemble and even if you don’t have the time or resources for a DIY project, they are available abundantly on the market.
Best Busy Boards to Buy
Here are some of our top recommended busy boards that you can have shipped quickly to your house or primary care center.
This free standing busy board requires no assistance from your end in keeping the senior patients engaged throughout the day. Equipped with a diverse set of locks and latches, this model is especially built for patients who have a keen interest in tools. Fastening and unfastening these combinations will not only them reinforce hand control and muscle strength, but also improve their motor and memory skills. It’s easy to set up and safe to use, allowing you to focus on your other tasks while your patient or loved one is occupied with it.
If simple locks and latches are not what you are looking for, this busy board is equipped with a diverse set of activities that will help keep your patients concentrated and. It is handmade and comes with a light switch, shoelaces tied to hooks, a chain lock, sash latch, zipper, dog collar and a barrel bolt. You’ll notice a handle attached to the board, making it easy to carry around. Unlike the previous option, this board is not designed for wall mounts and will require supervision from time to time. However, the diverse activities that come with this board will further help improve cognitive development and slow down memory decline.
A lot of thought and research was put into designing this small portable busy board, which is ideal for dementia patients who are frequently involved in long car trips and waiting hours during appointment visits. It’s light and easy to carry around anywhere and is the perfect remedy for seniors who may often feel agitated in unfamiliar environments. The board features a barrel bolt, chain lock, sash lock, light switch, wheel door stop and a zipper. The activities possible with these items have been studied to help your loved ones respond more positively and interact better with other people.
This busy board is safe to use and designed to reduce any chances of potential injury. It features a light switch, a barrel bolt, a D-ring, a chain lock, a sash lock, a wheel caster, and a doorstop glued with rubber tips. One interesting item attached to this board is a small door behind which you’ll find velcro circles. Moreover, there’s a prism tape beneath the door which reflects the colors of rainbow every time light shines on it, making it an attractive item to keep the patients entertained. The board comes with a handle for portability, and can be used on any flat surface.
Like ‘Katherine’, the ‘Marvin’ busy board is handmade for dementia patients. Excluding the D-ring, wheel caster and door stop, it features everything that you’d find in the previous model. Fewer items on this board allows for better leverage. Users can notice this by the careful positioning of the light switch and sash lock. The board is covered with an enamel paint like most of the above mentioned busy boards, making it easy to clean.
At times, people suffering from dementia feel out of place in their day-to-day dealings, which justifies their unexpected reactions and the need to simulate their cognitive skills. The best way to help them slow memory loss and they’ve a critical role is to encourage them to participate in recognizable activities that can keep them calm. We’ve come to realize that even on this phase of the journey where many complicated ideas and inventions have failed to meet this goal, something as simple as a busy board can help do wonders.