Using Our DVDs with Older People at Home

How to use our DVDs & Reminiscence Guides at home

Our DVDs and Reminiscence Guides are ideal for use at home for those of us who were born during or just after WW2 for general viewing and reminiscence.

It is fascinating that as we get older we begin to think back to our younger years. Sometimes those thoughts are about things which bring a smile to the face and other times they are fleeting memories that may make us want to search the Internet for more detailed information.

Our archive film based reminiscence resources may be even more helpful for anyone of this older age group who is now developing dementia, for whom any form of mental or sensory stimulation makes their life more meaningful.

We know from showing our archive films to many dementia patients and then having reminiscence conversations with them individually or in groups, that each one has memories stimulated by different things that they see in the film clips. It might be a piece of furniture, an object in a particular film scene (e.g. a china teapot in a kitchen), or it may be a scene of a location or event which recalls days gone by.

The milkman who appears in “Home Sweet Home” DVD 1 with his electric delivery float, clinking the glass bottles as he puts them on the doorsteps and helping his customers, nearly always seems to get patients chatting about memories of milk in their early life, even some patients who are normally quite withdrawn in group meetings.

Although our DVDs give the opportunity to play all the film clips without stopping(press “Play All” on the DVD menu), we strongly recommend that the greatest benefits can be gained by watching the clips individually by using the menu at the start of the DVD.

Ideally the relevant section of the Reminiscence Guide will help with creating a list of questions and topics that can be used with the patient after watching the particular film clip.

It is obviously very helpful if, as the husband, wife, partner or carer, you know the background and personal interests of the patient. You can then tailor the conversation more appropriately and introduce other objects and resources which already have particular meaning for the patient to trigger interest.

If you are not already taking advantage of the local services which are available for dementia patients and their carers in your area, we strongly recommend that you should do so. You may want to check your local council website to find out about local memory cafés, as well as the websites of organisations we list on the Useful Links section of this website which provide dementia related support services .