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ART THERAPY FOR Alzheimer’s disease & dementia. Charles A. Sourby MS Ed. 11/11/2006. Key Words. Dementia of the Alzheimer’s type Memory Loss Safety & Supervision. ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE.

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art therapy for alzheimer s disease dementia

ART THERAPY FOR Alzheimer’s disease & dementia

Charles A. Sourby MS Ed.


key words
Key Words
  • Dementia of the Alzheimer’s type
  • Memory Loss
  • Safety & Supervision
alzheimer s disease
  • Alzheimer's disease is a progressive form of dementia that causes an impairment of intellectual functioning
alzheimer s disease4
  • Patients have difficulties with decision making, judgment, attention span, memory loss, swallowing, speaking & recognizing close family members
alzheimer s disease5
  • Early in the disease process, patients present deficits in executive functioning: such as performing tasks involving multiple steps like balancing a checkbook or preparing a meal
alzheimer s disease6
  • Some individuals show personality changes or increased irritability.
  • In the middle and later stages psychotic symptoms are common.
alzheimer s disease7
  • Patients tend to develop incontinence, gait and motor disturbances, eventually becoming mute and bedridden.
  • Frontal Lobe: Irrational
  • Parietal Lobe: Disoriented
  • Occipital: Can't recognize people/objects
  • Brain Stem: Sleep-Disturbed
  • Temporal Lobe: Tongue-Tied
  • Hippocampus: Forgetful
  • Amygdala: Moody
improving quality of life
Improving Quality of Life

Art Therapy

  • Fosters social interaction
  • Cognition
  • Creative expression
presenting problems
Presenting Problems
  • Decreased attention span
  • Increased wandering & agitation
art therapy
Art Therapy
  • Uses creative expression as a source of growth and sustenance
  • Is a “language of communication”
art therapy12
Art Therapy

Helps those who are unable to express their thoughts with words via creative expression through art

art therapy13
Art Therapy

A process which fosters attention, spontaneity and originality of expression

art therapy activities15
Art Therapy Activities
  • Paper Mache’ Bracelets
  • Decorating Bracelets
art therapy activities16
Art Therapy Activities
  • ‘Mandala’ Painting
  • ILAC Cards
art therapy activities17
Art Therapy Activities
  • Travel Collage
  • Color Experiments
art therapy activities18
Art Therapy Activities
  • Stamp Painting
  • Painting Shells
art therapy activities19
Art Therapy Activities
  • Art Samples:

note the stereotypic scribbles


Art Therapy

  • Stimulates active participation
  • Facilitates creative expression in people who are nonverbal or have deficits in communication skills
art therapy22
Art Therapy
  • Provides the opportunity for experiences
  • Motivates learning in all domains of functioning
art therapy23
Art Therapy
  • Provides experiences not otherwise available to them
  • Creates the opportunity for positive, successful and pleasurable social activity
art therapy24
Art Therapy
  • Increases the ability to use energy purposefully, reduces mal-adaptive behaviors

Self Portrait of artist William Utermohlen, an American diagnosed Alzheimer’s in 1995

art therapy25
Art Therapy
  • Increases interaction with peers & others
  • Increases independence & self-direction
art therapy26
Art Therapy
  • Reflects self-image & body awareness
art therapy27
Art Therapy
  • Stimulates creativity

and imagination

  • Fosters memories
  • Alzheimer’s disease is progressive. Art Therapy helps maintain a sense of dignity, purpose, and self direction through creative expression and socialization.