This Surprising Technique Works Like Magic With Alzheimer's and Dementia Patients


For the past several years, my mother (86 years old) has been suffering with dementia. As the debilitating effects of the disease have slowly dwindled our interaction with her to nearly nothing, one simple game we play with her seems to wind the clock back.  Its magic-like effect brings a moment of joy to our family during the very stressful time. Sometimes, it is wonderful to just hear her voice again. As my mom's illness progresses, I've realized that this game has become more of a blessing. I have included the game and simple directions below. I am not a medical professional or specialist in the field of Geriatrics. However, I can see the positive effects of this game immediately.  My wish is to share this with others in hopes that it brings a little joy and levity to the families struggling with a family member suffering from dementia like we are.  

The Game

Below you will find a list of famous sayings, rhymes, quotes, and proverbs which are likely familiar to previous generations. You, as a caregiver, may find these familiar or not. Most of the sayings below are ingrained from childhood. Read each of the them aloud, but stop short just before resolving the phrase, allowing your loved one to finish the sentence. Bold and normal text separations suggest a good place to pause. Some of these phrases may be more effective if they are accompanied with a tune. As in my mother's case, she is currently unable answer to simple questions or remember anything from just moments before, yet she perks up to complete these deep-seated phrases. Although dementia robs us of the short term memory, this game allows some to connect with the memories that remain. I hope this little game brings some comfort to your situation. Please share with family, friends, and other loved ones who may find it useful.  


If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Everything but the kitchen sink.
Diamonds are a girl's best friend.
Gentlemen prefer blonds.
Lock, stock, and barrel.
Einie, Meenie, Mynie, Moe.
Ink, a dink, a bottle of ink. The cork fell out and you stink.
My mother told me to pick the very best one and you are not it.
See the USA, in your Chevrolet.
Misery loves company.
A spoon full of sugar makes the medicine go down.
Put one foot in front of the other.
A watched pot never boils.
Tomorrow is a brand new day.
Pop goes the weasel.
From the frying pan into the fire.
That's the pot calling the kettle black.
You see the glass 1/2 empty, I see the glass half full.
Too many cooks spoil the broth.
You say tomato, I say tomato.
Twinkle, twinkle, little star.
You eyes are too big for your stomach.
Before you eat, you must wash your hands.
It's as plain as the nose on your face.
Mothers have eyes in the back of their head.
You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.
I'll huff, I'll puff, and I'll blow your house down.
Jack and Jill went up the hill.
Take me out to the ball game.
The fruit doesn't fall far from the tree.
One bad apple spoils the whole bunch.
One good deed deserves another.
Diamonds are a girl's best friend.
Good night, sleep tight, don't let the bed bugs bite.
A bird in the hand is worth two in a bush.
Cleanliness is next to Godliness.
Small, medium, and large.
Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives.
Birds of a feather flock together.
The way to a man's heart is through his stomach.
What goes up, must come down.
A penny saved is a penny earned.
There's a buyer for every seller.
There's a sucker born every minute.
When you're happy and you know it clap your hands.
One for the money, two for the show, three to get ready and four to go.
Catch a tiger by it's toe.
It's raining, it's pouring the old man is snoring.
Rain, rain, go away, come again another day.
Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house.


My Bonnie lies over the ocean.
This little piggy went to market.
Don't put all your eggs in one basket.
Don't count your chickens before they hatch.
Don't judge a book by it's cover.
Don't step on my blue suede shoes.
These boots were made for walkin'.
Idle hands are the devil's workshop.
If horses were wishes, beggars would ride.
You can't teach an old dog new tricks.
Like two peas in a pod.
Practice makes perfect. 
He's as happy as a clam.
Life is a bowl full of cherries. 
An eye for an eye.
Can the leopard change his spots?
Beauty is but skin deep.
All that glitters is not gold.
The pen is mightier than the sword.
Nothing is certain but death and taxes.
Blood is thicker than water.
Don't steal my thunder.
When in Rome, do as the Romans do.
Live to fight another day.
Don't bite the hand that feeds you.
That put me through the wringer.
It's like trying to get blood out of a stone.
A day late and a dollar short.
Don't add fuel to the fire.
He's got an ace up his sleeve.
That's just a drop in the bucket.
There's no use crying over spilled milk.
A dime a dozen.
Even a broken clock is right twice a day.
On the good ship, lolly pop.
Rome wasn't built in a day.
See the world through rose colored glasses.
Carry the weight of the world on your shoulders.
I want to be love by you, just you, and nobody else but you.
There were bells, on a hill, but I never heard them ringing, no I never heard them at all, 'till there was you.
I pledge allegiance to the flag, of the united states of America
I’m gonna sit right down and write myself a letter.
To all the girls I’ve loved before.
Fools rush in where wise men fear to tread.
You spring forward, and you fall back. 

Please share with family, friends and loved ones who may find this useful. Do you have some additional sayings that I haven’t listed yet? Please add them in the comments below.