Art for
Alzheimer's
"You Can Do It! ART"--Watercolor
Sunrise Services Distributing, LLC
Alzheimer's and Dementia Sufferers Respond to Watercolor Painting

Improving Quality of Life for Alzheimer's and Dementia Sufferers

"Since we started the watercolor program, the progress is amazing. Our residents are actually
working their brains,
and watching and listening to them during the activity time is just
awesome. Sometimes it's hard to keep from crying."


                                 Real stories and Research findings




Confidentiality Policies of this facility prohibit us from displaying most photos of the residents, but
                               here are some of their paintings and stories:

"What residents do every week is different. It makes me enjoy that day so much more. No one
gets stressed or irritable
and we've never had to stop because someone got upset."


Exciting results are being observed in the
program. As the lessons are implemented in assisted living and nursing home facilities, Activities
Directors are being surprised by their Alzheimer's and dementia residents' ability to sustain focus
and respond to the painting. Even more exciting,
the stimulation of the painting experiences
seems to be carrying over into other areas as well, benefiting emotional and social
aspects of the residents' lives.

       How is this happening?

Neurologists studying right and left brain functioning have identified the differences in the two
hemispheres of the brain, and attribute intuitional, artistic functions to the right side of the brain;
while logical, language, verbal functions operate primarily in the left side of the brain. Whereas
Alzheimer's disease effects are first noted in memory retrieval problems, logic, reasoning, and
verbalization, (left brain dominance), it may be that right brain functioning is not necessarily
affected to the same degree, and can be activated by
right-brain connections, bringing forth
communication through different avenues such as art and music.


                        
                                   




"Our residents (Alzheimer's/dementia) are at different stages but what we are finding is they all
have quite an imagination that comes as the watercolor painting
touches their memory."

"The DVDs are awesome for our residents. They're slow enough that our people can follow along
and the artist's speech is
very calming and soothing, which is important to Alzheimer's people."

"We are finding that even our lower-functioning residents                                                         
get right in there and do it. Sometimes we help them at first but
then they take off
on their own."



"I didn't think she would be able to focus on this activity and stay with it, but she really stayed with
it."

"What residents do every week is different. It makes me enjoy that day so much more.
No one
gets stressed or irritable
and we've never had to stop because someone got upset."

"After a session maybe a couple of our residents say they don't like their painting but they still say
they had fun and want to come back and do it again next week."

"The program is
very adaptable to our facility and to the type of residents we have."


Family Members Paint together.
                                                        
                                               
                                              Families enjoy seeing their loved ones                                                                                                
absorbed, focused, active, and                                                                                                    
producing creative expressions of
their                                                                                           thoughts, memories, and feelings!


(Photo used with permission)


Caregivers Paint with Residents
Activities Directors and volunteers paint along with
the residents, and experience time of enjoyment
and relaxation in their busy days.  Barbara
Allen, volunteer assistant, paints with a group of residents.
Here is her painting:
                     
(Click on thumbnail to enlarge)




Comments from other caregivers of Alzheimer's persons who are painting elsewhere with the "You
Can Do It! ART" program are similar to these
actual quotations:

"She hadn't spoken much before painting, or taken any interest in our activities. But since the
painting sessions, she has become
more talkative. She bowled me over when she asked if she
could clean the brushes. I almost cried, seeing her progress."

"This is the first activity that he has taken part in, and he
asks when we will be painting again."

"This is one of the
best activities we've ever had."

"She was
so much calmer after the painting lesson!"



                                                     
"You Can Do It! ART"--Watercolor
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               copyright 2007 Sunrise Services Distributing, LLC  All rights reserved.
Activities Director
Rose Doty's painting,
done while working
with residents
Kathy Biddle, left, is Assistant to the Activities
director at Capitol Care Center. She tells how  
residents are responding to the watercolor
sessions:
"She was so much calmer after the painting lesson!"
Link for
Caregivers:
University of Florida
online articles about
Caregivers'
well-being,
challenges, all kinds
of helpful information
on physical, mental,
emotional issues.
"You Can Do It! ART"
Fabulous colors,
shapes,
blending...FUN!
Frame it !
Childhood Home
Deluxe Kit, with all
painting materials,
ebook, and
instructional DVDs