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An iPad interactive game app released by Dementia Australia aims to help families connect with their loved ones who are living with dementia.

The app, A Better Visit, consists of a range of interactive two-player games, designed to encourage positive social interactions between people with dementia and their families.

The games, including Bowling, Washing Windows, Tic Tac Tango and Marble Maze, were all designed with the input of people living with moderate to advanced dementia and their family and friends.

Dementia Australia CEO Maree McCabe said family members often say that they don’t know how to communicate and interact with a loved one who has dementia, especially as their dementia advances and the app has been designed to tackle this issue.

“Family members, children and friends start to withdraw and perhaps become less likely to include the person with dementia in everyday activities or schedule in regular visits,” Ms McCabe said.

“Over time this social isolation can have a profound impact on the person with dementia and the primary carers.

“A recent Inclusion and Isolation report by Dementia Australia found that people weren’t sure how to talk to someone with dementia. More than 60 per cent of people said they didn’t know what to say to someone with dementia.

“By playing the games in the app, carers and other family members will be inspired to engage with the person with dementia through the interaction, images and sounds enhancing their enjoyment and discussions.”

Tips for interacting with a loved one with dementia through app gameplay

The app’s interactive features are designed to spark conversation and laughter, while adjustable speeds, appropriate music and easy-to-use buttons mean that even those that aren’t tech savvy can join in the fun.

Dementia Australia offers the following advice on how to use the app to interact with a family member with dementia:

  • Share the experience and learn the game together. Allow room for the person with dementia to explore the game at their own pace.
  • Find the right activity at the right time. There may be days where an activity offline would be preferable.
  • Engage in conversations. Ask questions and tell stories sparked by the gameplay.
  • Be flexible and explorative. There is no right or wrong way to play, so work with your loved one to find a way that works for you.
The app is free to download through the App Store and Google Play. For more information, or to download the app, click here.

Belinda Peters
Belinda brings more than 17 years experience in journalism to her role as Seasons Digital Content Writer. As our blog editor, Belinda will take the confusion out of aged care with entertaining and informative stories from across the aged care industry and our Seasons communities.
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