Virtual reality technology gives us the power to experience life from an entirely different point of view. Headsets like Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and competing products from Sony and Samsung are already enhancing the video games we play and the movies we enjoy in our living rooms. But, virtual reality isn’t just about fun and games.
This powerful technology is also helping us better understand what life is like for people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia. By allowing us to literally see life through the eyes of an Alzheimer’s patient, we can then begin to make smarter decisions in designing the memory care services and accommodations at our senior living or life plan communities.
In this post, you’ll learn more about emerging memory care design trends that may improve quality of life for residents, boost your satisfaction scores and help your senior living or life plan community thrive.
Coding with Colors & Patterns
Believe it or not, the color of the floor tile or the pattern in the carpet could have a dramatic impact on the way your memory care residents perceive their surroundings. For example, extremely dark carpeting may create an optical illusion that gives the impression of a hole or a dangerous area to be avoided. Similarly, highly contrasting floor tiles sometimes come across as two totally different surfaces and may cause undue alarm or confusion in some residents.
But, this doesn’t mean that your memory care unit needs to be bland. Good use of color and patterns can not only lift spirits; it can also help your residents recall positive memories. Invoke a brilliant sunrise with warm yellows, or conjure the ocean with shades of blue and aqua. Before redecorating the memory care neighborhood within your senior living community, consult with memory care design experts. They can help you make the right choices to create an inviting space that feels safe, secure and vibrant.
Opening the Door to Memories
One of the challenges facing senior living communities is to help memory care residents recognize their new homes. While painting entryways with unique colors or words can help, research shows that personal objects are more effective in triggering memories. So, some memory care providers are installing display cases, or memory boxes, outside of each room where small, meaningful items are kept to help residents associate their belongings with their living areas.
Cooking Up a Connection
The family kitchen isn’t just the place where food is prepared – it’s the place where people congregate to enjoy each other’s company. The “open kitchen” concept in memory care design makes it easy for residents to help with daily food prep or simply spend more time in the presence of others. Not only is the physical act of cooking therapeutic in its own right, it could also help residents reconnect with their old memories.
Make Life More Memorable by Design
Before virtually reality, we could only imagine what it was like to suffer from Alzheimer’s. Now, thanks to the latest technology, we can walk in the virtual shoes of someone with dementia. Memory care design trends like the ones we’ve explored here are driven by a constantly evolving appreciation for the people who will ultimately inhabit the spaces we create. At MatrixCare, this same appreciation is what drives our comprehensive senior living EHR solutions.
Learn More About MatrixCare for Senior Living & Life Plan Communities
MatrixCare for Senior Living is a robust software solution that makes it easy to manage resident care and business operations. We also offer comprehensive CCRC software designed specifically for life plan communities. Purpose-built by and for experts, our solutions help communities deliver superior services and maximize overall operating margins. Contact us today to learn more.