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Dementia Blankets

Dementia Blankets, Cannula Sleeves and Twiddle Muffs Appeal 

If you enjoy knitting or crocheting, then this is the appeal for you!

We need more brightly coloured knitted/crochet blankets, twiddle muffs and cannula sleeves for our dementia patients to use when conveyed by ambulance and during their stay in hospital. 

We are very grateful to our local community who continually support us by using their creative talents to knit and crochet dementia blankets, twiddle muffs and cannula sleeves.

These items are fun to make and can provide a person living with dementia with stimulation for improved wellbeing, including keeping restless hands busy. These are perfect craft projects to use up any left over and odd balls of new wool you may have, and once knitted can be decorated with a variety of spare items. 

Dementia blankets are usually 90cm x 90cm (or 3ft by 3ft), brightly (multi) coloured crochet or knitted new wool blankets.  They are given to our patients when they are settled on the ward. They help to provide a less clinical feel to their bed as they are brightly coloured and, a way of identifying where they are sleeping.  Most of our patients are of the age group where they remember their mum’s or family members knitting/crocheting, and this then provides an opportunity to talk about their memories. The blankets are single use only and our patients are encouraged to take them home. 

Twiddle Muffs are brightly coloured knitted hand muffs with textured items attached (approximately six items or more on the outside and four on the inside) that provide people with dementia visual, tactile and sensory stimulation. - with the added benefit of keeping hands nice and warm too! 

Decorating twiddle muffs
You can use your imagination to decorate the twiddle muffs, inside and out, with textured strands of ribbons, flowers loops, pompoms, etc. or knit a separate pocket for a favourite photo or a handkerchief.  When making a twiddle muff, please make sure that there are no loose threads and that everything is sewn on tight, so attachments cannot be pulled off.

As with the blankets, patients are asked to take their twiddle muffs home with them when they are discharged from hospital. 

Cannula Sleeves - a cannula is a fine tube inserted into a vein, usually in the back of your hand or arm, using a small fine needle. It is used to administer medication, drain off fluid or for the gathering of medical samples. The knitted cannula sleeves are very helpful in providing a stimulating distraction and helps to prevent patients living with dementia, from trying to remove their cannula.  So, if you can provide these, then please feel free to use this pattern.  

Knitted items will also help patients conveyed by ambulance
We would also like to be able to share a stock of all the knitted items with our ambulance team to give to dementia patients on their journey by ambulance into hospital. 

Please ensure that only new wool is used in the production of these items to help us maintain infection control along will the “single use” policy. 

How to support this appeal:

If you are a crafty creative type and enjoy knitting, you can follow the Twiddle Muff pattern here or for a Cannula Sleeve pattern here or use your own if it has similar dimensions.

Donating your items:

Any donations of blankets or twiddle muffs can be left at the main reception desk, St. Mary’s Hospital.

For more information, please contact us at: or 01983 822099 Ext 3479.

Thank again for supporting our dementia patients and making a real difference to improve their experience when they are conveyed by ambulance to hospital and during their 

Bright Blankets

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