People who suffer Alzheimer disease and other types of dementia have strong memories of their long-gone lives and experiences and almost zero memory of recent and current events. Detailed reconstruction of past-day environment has proved to be an excellent way to stimulate memory in patients.According to research data, ambience, its design and layout influences people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. Based on data received during a research on this influence, healthcare and caregiving specialists decided to develop and create interior design solutions to help patients improve their conditions. Research data suggests that the behavior of residents of dementia care facilities with different environments varies greatly. It creates a rich basis for further research, engineering work, construction and interior design. In the 1980s and 1990s, tons of articles and guides and books about creating safe and homely environments for dementia patients were written and published. These works highlight the importance of using comforting color palettes, providing healthy acoustics and uncluttered rooms. All these solutions are largely based on clinical studies focusing on patients’ reactions to outer stimulants and tendencies observed in patients placed in respective environments. Caregivers should keep track of every patient’s reaction to particular stimulants. This can help them minimize stress and anxiety, which may occur under certain circumstances, such as relocation. Memory Memory is a special aspect of treatment of Alzheimer disease, because patients’ memory takes the whole brunt of it. However, there are some “growth areas”, which, if stimulated properly, can pretty much improve a patient’s quality of life. People suffering from Alzheimer disease may lose memories of recent events and not memorize current ones at all. However, they tend to have an excellent memory for long past events.
- These include the most epoch-making ones from childhood (school entry, graduation, etc.), adolescence (college years, graduation, etc.), youth (first job, professional success, marriage, etc.)
What you can do if… If you suspect Alzheimer disease in one of your elderly family member, don’t panic. Do your best to provide decent health care for your loved one. Even if you do not have an opportunity to place him/her in a facility, you can create a safe home environment for him/her. Consult an interior designer, who has experience with dementia care centers, and modify your interior as advised. Remember stories he/she once told you about his/her best days. Refer to these stories and fill the house with vestiges from those days. This will keep his/her memory working for much longer.