Contrasting Colours in Design for the Elderly
Although there is no cure for Alzheimer’s or dementia, there are ways to assist patients with their day-to-day activities. Good lighting and contrasting colours are important elements of dementia-friendly design. In general, older people require three times the amount of light to see as well as younger people and are more sensitive to glare. Alzheimer’s and dementia patients really benefit from the appropriate use of colour in their surroundings.
Alzheimer’s Australia suggests optimising helpful stimulation as one of their ten “Dementia Enabling Environment Principles.” According to their Help Sheet entitled How To Design Dementia-Friendly Care Environments, ” well set up or designed environment, planned with impaired thinking skills in mind, can help maintain abilities and provide meaningful engagement by providing essential prompts, accessibility and reduce risks to support a person with dementia.”
Bright Focus Foundation, in Making Your Home Dementia Friendly, suggests using contrasting colours in the bathroom. “If the basin is white, put colourful stickers on it to help see it. For ease of identifying and positioning, change the toilet seat to a bright and contrasting colour. Also consider a raised seat, if needed for ease and safety.”
Colour and contrast are important aids for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients to see things better. Initial Hygiene’s Signature Colour range is perfectly suited for aged care facilities and hospitals. Just think which of these would help you to remember to wash and dry your hands?