Listen to Books on Tape

Reading may become challenging for those with Alzheimer’s disease due to  physical changes in the brain.  However, it doesn’t mean that they should miss out on a good story.  Many website offer free, downloadable audio books based on works in the public domain (generally classics like Twain, Shakespeare, etc.).  Your local library also is a good resource for books on tape/CD. 

However, if it’s hard to get out of the house, your local library’s selection is limited, or you just want access to a larger variety of titles, people with Alzheimer’s disease who are having trouble reading are eligible to borrow free audiobooks through the National Library Service.  The best part?  These audiobooks are delivered and sent back through postage-free mail!  Per the NLS website, the following individuals are eligible for services:

  1. Persons whose visual disability, with correction and regardless of optical measurement, is certified by competent authority as preventing the reading of standard printed material
  2. Persons certified by competent authority as unable to read or unable to use standard printed material as a result of physical limitations.

Click here for a form your doctor fills out to certify the individual as eligible and you’re on your way! 

Those in the early stages of the disease can discover new books and re-“read” old favorites.  Those in the moderate stages of the disease might need help setting up the stereo, but can still enjoy listening to a well-known favorite or shorter stories.  Even those in the severe stages of the disease often respond positively to the soothing sounds of a voice reading to them.  Another option is to try the Bible or other religious texts on tape.  This is an especially nice option if getting up and ready for services is difficult.  Instead going out to church, why not listen to passages in the comfort of your own home?

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