Thursday, June 23, 2022

What is Wayfinding in Care Homes?

Wayfinding is a vital component of any care home design, when used effectively it can dampen the stresses of dementia and boost the wellbeing of residents. Care Homes needn’t be drab affairs and should be filled with love, life and laughter - appropriate wayfinding and orientation helps massively.

Wayfinding is a variant of spatial reasoning, it’s the ability to know where you are in a healthcare environment. This awareness gives comfort to care home residents.  As we get older, we struggle to orientate ourselves correctly. This is particularly clear in those affected with dementia, who can feel lost in previously familiar situations.

We always consider orientation and wayfinding when working and designing with care home professionals.

There are a couple of different approaches to implementing wayfinding in healthcare.

Engaging with a design team at the start of a project and working with architects means that a solid foundation with wayfinding at the forefront is instilled.

Another approach is the use of environmental prompts around the care home. These can include the use of specific colours, furnishings, lighting and signs.

Using visual prompts and aids all help residents feel at ease when navigating a care home. These prompts could range from distinctive art to obvious objects and wayfinding signs. Other factors that should be considered are colours used, lighting and sign placement.

These are all considerations we understand well and can guide you through any care home new builds or refurbishments.

Finally, to add, the real hallmark of solid wayfinding and orientation is consistency! Through proper guidance and standardised signs that are rarely moved you can relax in the knowledge that your residents are happy and comfortable in their surroundings.

If you would like to know more why not contact us here.

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