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Coloring Patterns of Those With Alzheimer's

Updated on May 30, 2014

A Pictorial Study

After years of working as an Activities Director in several retirement homes and observing certain unique patterns of coloring by those residents with dementia and alzheimer's disease, I decided to publish a short pictorial study I did on "Recognizing The Coloring Patterns of Those With Alzheimer's." I show, through pictures, the consistent patterns that are similar with these elderly residents and how to recognize them. The booklet is not meant to diagnose alzheimer's, but merely to make those that work with the elderly aware of changes happening with their resident inorder to refer them for proper medical diagnosis.

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Patterns To Look For

These are some of the patterns to look for:

1.The residents with Alzheimer's tended to change colors randomly as they colored with no thought of the natural color of the object or person pictured. This seemed to be one of the first changes I noticed in working with these residents. I feel that the part of the brain that recognizes color should be further evaluated in a scientific study on the subject.

2. Next, when I developed an intricately patterned coloring book--"The Vintage Coloring Book"--these residents started mimicing the patterns and outlining the objects pictured along with the previously noted color changes, as mentioned before.

3. Lastly, during the later stages of the disease, the residents usually only chose to use one color, and again followed the outlines in the pictures first, then filled in most of their picture with the one color over and over again.

Further Research is Needed

Recently, a medical center has shown some interest in doing a proper study on this subject, but so far no research has been done to compare these coloring patterns to the developing stages of Alzheimer's disease or to find out what is happening in the brain that causes these changes. If anyone has further information of the subject, I would be very interested to learn about it. Hopefully, one day, we will be able to recognize the stages of Alzheimef's early on, and perhaps, one day, have a cure for it.


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