Mental Health staff accept Twiddlemitts challenge

The Mental Health team based at Garburn House in Westmorland General Hospital have been picking up a new skill to help dementia patients in their care journey.

Helen Bradford, Mental Health Liaison Practitioner at Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CPFT), has been teaching other staff in the team to knit ‘twiddlemits’ for patients who live with dementia.

She explains:

“A Twiddlemitt is a sensory knitted band which items can be attached to for dementia patients to twiddle in their hands such as buttons and fringing. They give unoccupied hands something to do to reduce agitation and help with stimulation.

“We are trying to give patients something they would find engaging – it isn’t just a piece of paper, “It’s homing in on skills they may already have, and it’s something that staff can use with patients when caring for them.”

The aim is for the staff who work with dementia patients and their carers to create their own twiddlemitts and then use these newly gained skills with patients who would enjoy sparking up an old memory of knitting.