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How to Decorate a Memory Care Room

If you have a loved one with Alzheimer’s Dementia, or other memory loss concerns, you may wish to consider creating a memory care room to support them. The goal of memory care is to assist individuals with cognitive and memory loss concerns. As part of this, creating a memory room helps provide a secure and comforting atmosphere, minimize confusion and promote a sense of familiarity. 

Who Should Be Involved in Decorating a Memory Care Room?

Decorating a memory care room in a care facility can involve both family members and care home staff. Families may actively participate, bringing in personal items, in collaboration with guidelines, and often, it’s a joint effort, with families and staff working together. Some care homes have professional designers to ensure safe, dementia-friendly environments. Communication between family members and care providers is crucial to adapt decor as the individual’s needs evolve. 

If you are looking after your loved one in the comfort and privacy of your own home, the familiar surroundings help your loved one feel emotionally secure. In these cases, you can have more control over decorating, although you may have the support of professional caregivers who come to the home to help.

Regardless, the goal is to establish an environment that helps your loved one, ensuring comfort, safety, and overall well-being.

Alzheimer’s or Dementia Care and Senior Living: What’s Included in Memory Care Rooms and Facilities

Memory care rooms aim to provide a safe and supportive environment for seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia. These rooms have features to cater to the unique needs of individuals facing memory challenges. 

Dementia-Friendly Decor

Creating a dementia-friendly decor involves incorporating elements that support cognitive function and well-being. This includes using easily recognizable patterns, contrasting colours, and avoiding complex designs that might confuse residents. The goal is to make the living space feel familiar and comforting, reducing stress and anxiety. Special safety considerations need to be taken for home decor, as well. 

Memory Care Decorating Tips And Best Practices

There are some best practices to follow when creating a space for those suffering from memory loss, including Alzheimer’s and dementia patients, to make the space comfortable, relaxing, supportive, and safe.

Natural Lighting

Natural light has a positive impact on mood and overall well-being. Arrange furniture to maximize exposure to sunlight, and use sheer curtains to diffuse harsh light. Well-lit spaces can help regulate sleep patterns, improve mood, and create a welcoming atmosphere.

Colour Contrasting Furniture

Poor depth perception, reduced visual acuity, and a decline in spatial awareness is a common concern for those with Alzheimer’s or dementia, as these neurodegenerative conditions progress. Selecting furniture with contrasting colours will help make it easier for your loved one to identify objects, reducing the risk of accidents. For example, chair and table colours should be chosen to help them stand out from the flooring.

Sentimental Home Décor

Personalized decor can trigger positive memories and emotions. Display family photos, mementos, and familiar items to create a sense of continuity and identity. Ensure that the decor reflects the individual’s unique history and personality, incorporating elements that resonate with their past. A memory box display, where meaningful items are displayed safely on a wall to encourage recollections, is a great way to do this. 

close image rustic metal chair table a courtyard garden senior housing

Keep It Simple

Simplicity is critical when decorating memory care rooms. Minimize clutter and avoid overwhelming, busy patterns and excessive furniture. A streamlined and uncluttered environment helps people living with dementia or Alzheimer’s to focus and move around more easily, reducing the risk of disorientation. 

Fun And Functional

Incorporate elements that serve dual purposes by being both fun and functional. For instance, use furniture with built-in storage or tactile textures that engage residents. Incorporate activities that stimulate cognitive function, such as puzzles or memory games, within the decor.

Promote Wellness

Elements that promote physical and mental health can be incorporated. Comfortable seating, soft textures, and designated spaces for relaxation can contribute to a calming environment. Consider techniques like aromatherapy, which can have positive effects on mood and memory.

Create A Therapeutic Garden

An indoor or outdoor memory garden can provide a peaceful and sensory-rich space for a loved one with dementia or Alzheimer’s. Scent can evoke memory, so choose plants with pleasant scents, vibrant colours, and varying textures. In addition, a garden can encourage gentle exercise and moments of reflection, contributing to overall well-being.

Safety in Memory Care Design

Safety is paramount when designing memory care spaces. Install grab bars in bathrooms and other key areas, and prevent clutter. Ensure flooring is non-slip with no tripping hazards. Sticking to bare hardwood or plain carpeting. If rugs or mats are necessary, use light coloured ones, in a solid colour, and ensure they are secure, with a non-slip surface. Avoid patterns, as people with dementia may perceive these items as moving. Visual cues and signage help residents navigate safely.

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Memory Care Matters

A thoughtful memory care room can improve the quality of life for those dealing with Alzheimer’s or dementia, with a supportive and enriching environment that fosters a sense of security and familiarity. 

Peak Home Healthcare understands why families may prefer to look after loved ones in their own home, to offer the comforts and familiarity of home. We provide dependable, caring senior home healthcare services to help you do just that, and can also guide you on ways to make the home more Alzheimer’s or dementia friendly.

Author

Tyler D. Stothers

President of Peak Home Health Care Inc., stands out as a seasoned professional in home health care. With a Business and Communications degree from Laurier (2014) and certifications as a Certified Professional Consultant on Aging (CPCA) and a Senior Home Safety Specialist, Tyler brings a wealth of knowledge to his role. His career began with founding Peak Home Health Care in December 2016, motivated by a vision to elevate senior care services.

Under his leadership, the company has consistently won the Oakville Reader’s Choice Award for Best in Home Health Care for six years, showcasing his commitment to service excellence. Before this, Tyler contributed significantly as a Senior Care Specialist at Forsent Health Inc. His approach to home health care is deeply personal, emphasizing safe, compassionate services that families can trust.

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