Thursday, June 30, 2022

Improving Quality of life in Care Homes

Improving Quality of life in Care Homes

Care home managers and healthcare professionals are always looking for ways to enhance the quality of life for care home residents.

We get asked this a lot when discussing interior designs with our customers. Our experts have put together four key areas to think about, that may help get the creative juices running and enhance the wellbeing of those in long term care.

1)      Tackle loneliness

Firstly, remember that people can feel lonely even when in a crowd. Loneliness can cripple a care home residents’ sense of worth. Loneliness isn’t immediately obvious to carers, friends and families. Sensory impairments, mobility issues, dementia and language barriers are the main factors leading to loneliness.

 

Communication is key when someone might be feeling lonely. Why not suggest the following ideas for residents to reconnect with other people

 

-          Schedule regular visits or phone calls with family and friends.

-          Seek out past creative & cultural passions – this could involve singing, cooking or art, for example.

-          As a care home professional try and make your residents feel included by asking them for improvements or policies to implement.

 

2)      Harness Technology

We often see creative and innovative products that seek to help those who find every day tasks difficult. These technologies should be embraced.

 

One example is an innovative new eating product allows those who are infirm or have hand tremors to eat. If you have Parkinson’s, dementia or a stroke lifting and therefore eating is very difficult. This difficulty can lead to malnutrition and loss of independence. Liftware uses a gimbal system to counteract these difficulties.

 

Also, remember many libraries provide computer classes. By allowing for a more computer literate resident, their lives are enhanced as they have the freedom to access the information they desire.

 

3)      Move!

Any element of movement and fitness is known to boost moods. This is particularly important for care home residents who may spend a lot of time inside.

 

Regular physical activity can tackle loneliness, depression and help overall health.

 

Ideally moving around outdoors is the best. A short walk around a communal garden is just the ticket. Even better asking friends and family to accompany them is even better!

 

4)      Personal touches

Bedrooms are our own personal sanctuary. They are where we can rest and enjoy solitude. However, some care home bedrooms can come across samey and repetitive. This doesn’t have to be the case. Adding those personal touches to a bedroom can really benefit the resident. You should work with residents to personalise their rooms to their liking. This is also an opportunity to learn about their likes and dislikes.

 

You could add bespoke wallpaper, include a desk for writing or crafts. Have a look at lighting and making it easier to find things as well. We wrote about how good lighting can boost moods here.

 

For communal areas tailoring them to their purpose is a good idea – a cinema room with classic movie posters or adding plants to internal areas and adding a splash of colour. This will make your communal areas feel welcoming.

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