A Better Visit app

Dementia Australia has released a new iPad app to help family members connect and communicate with loved ones who are living with dementia through interactive games.

The app, A Better Visit, features a range of interactive two-player games, including a version of noughts and crosses called Tic Tac Tango, designed to enhance communication and provide an opportunity for positive social interactions between people with dementia and their families.

The app was developed in collaboration by Dementia Australia, Lifeview Residential Care and Swinburne University of Technology’s Future Self and Design Living Lab.

It was made with people living in residential facilities in mind but can be used just was effectively in the family home.

“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,” Dementia Australia CEO Maree McCabe said.

Input from people with dementia

The games were designed with the input of people living with moderate and advanced dementia and their friends and family members.

Researchers were able to observe interactions and tailor elements of the games to include adjustable speeds, appropriate music and easy-to-use buttons.

“We are really pleased our residents living with dementia were able to make a contribution to the design of the app which will bring such joy to families for many years to come,” said Lifeview CEO Madeline Gall.

“Through the stimulation and interaction A Better Visit prompts we would hear more laughter and chatting.

“What’s more we observed after the game play, the resident living with dementia’s mood would be more upbeat and often that positive mood would continue on, even after the families had gone home.”

You can download the app here.

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