In the mid- to late stages of Alzheimer’s, short-term memory tends to be non-existent. Your mom or dad will not remember something they just watched, read, or heard. Things from their past mean more to them and seem more familiar.

You’ll find certain decades stand out. Your mom may remember her 20s best. Your dad may be more familiar with things that happened in his teen years. When you find that decade that’s most familiar, start finding the shows, movies, music, books, and clothing from that era. It’s going to make a difference in caring for a parent with Alzheimer’s.

How do you find the shows they watched most? You’re going to find trial and error works best. Here are other tips if you’re still struggling.

Ask Your Mom or Dad

Sit down and start a conversation. Ask your mom or dad what shows they loved to watch. Keep mental notes as they talk about them. You might find your dad was a big fan of Gunsmoke, but your mom wouldn’t miss an episode of Cagney and Lacey.

Next, ask what actors were favorites. If you learn your dad loved James Garner, you might find him liking shows like The Rockford Files or movies like The Great Escape. Your mom may answer Julie Andrews, which means movies like Mary Poppins or The Sound of Music are good choices. For TV shows, The Julie Andrews Hour would be worth finding.

Research Specific Years

It’s easy to find listings of shows and movies from specific years on sites like Wikipedia or IMDB. Build a list of the results. Try to make the list as large as you can. Some of these shows and movies will be easy to find on streaming channels like Hulu, Netflix, or YouTube, but others will be difficult. The more choices you have, the easier it will be to find something.

Watch for Reactions

When you start finding shows that seem to be a good match, watch your parent’s reaction. You’ll get a sense of what works and what doesn’t. If your mom sits and watches a full episode of a show or sticks around for 30 minutes of a movie, that show or actor is a good fit.

Remember That Self-Care is Important

Sure, you can buy a few minutes to yourself by putting on a classic TV show or movie. A few minutes isn’t enough, however. Self-care is important for your well-being. Make sure you’re taking care of yourself by arranging respite care from caregivers.

Caregivers come as often as you need them to. While they sit with your mom or dad, you’re free to go out with friends, take a bubble bath, go to the spa, or take a nap. Call a home care agency to discuss rates and services caregivers offer.


If you or an aging loved-one is considering a Caregiver in Chanhassan, MN please contact the caring staff at Billie’s Choice, LLC today at (952) 653-1899. 

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