If you are a facility that works with memory care residents, then there are many things to be considered to help those residents adjust to their new home, stay engaged, and find their way around. The Invacare Interior Design team offers many options to ease the transition from home to a facility and to keep memory care residents engaged. Examples can be found in their showroom, too!
Memory Care Clocks
Living with memory issues and trying to go about life as normal as possible is difficult enough without having to worry about reading a clock. It can be confusing and upsetting for memory care residents to read a clock. Choose clocks that have displays that show the time of day and say things like, “It is now Sunday evening.” These eliminate mistakes in time and day and leave no question about the time unanswered. The clear display of time and day can help remove the misinterpretations that can come with memory problems in all stages of ability.
Shadowboxes and Shadowbox Room Signs
For a memory care resident, having to find their way back “home” can cause frustration – especially if they might not understand or remember that home has changed. To them, home is the photo of their wedding day that sat on their nightstand for 40 years, or the unique broach that once belonged to their mother. Often, those anchor items are so ingrained in a resident’s mind that they are subconsciously drawn to them. By securing these items outside the door to a resident’s room, the transition to their new home becomes more familiar and less frightening.
Another way to enrich the experiences of residents with memory issues who tend to wander is to provide sections of the wall that offer tactile stimulation. Whether upholstered pieces or wall textures both can provide visual and tactile stimulation. By mixing up the different sensations provided in each section, residents can channel their need for stimulus into something calming.
Created specifically for memory care residents, life stations provide a constructive activity in which the resident can safely channel their energy as opposed to wandering the facility. These stations bring back positive memories for residents by giving them the opportunities to spend their time doing the things they used to love doing. They provide a sense of control and independence that a resident will not typically receive. Nothing is more rewarding than seeing a resident’s face light up while doing something that they love to do that appeals to their heart as well as their mind.
Music has been proven in many instances to trigger memories in people of all stages of life. Music creates a sense of familiarity and calmness and means something unique to every individual. Everyone has a specific connection to sensations from their past and sound is a very strong factor that triggers recollection in everyone.
Hobby windows are another item designed to help trigger memory recognition. A step further in activity recognition is the visual texture of actual times that correspond to that activity. While viewing the image that corresponds to a pastime from earlier years, the resident has another anchor in their mind to help those pleasant memories sink in and may help create a sense of calm.