Living Environments That Reduce Stress in Seniors
on July 5th, 2016 in Interior Design | No Comments
When you have lived in the same home for many years, it can be stressful to make a move. It can be especially difficult if you are dealing with ailing health or memory problems. However, there are ways to reduce stress on your new location. Dogwood Forest communities uses scientific research to make sure our residents are not dealing with too much stress, besides perhaps what haircut to get from our salon.
We have learned that the best way to help our residents relax is to make sure their memories are not thrown out when they move in. We also utilize other comforts of home to make the transition much easier. Moving to a Dogwood Forest community does not mean leaving your life of memories behind. In fact, many of the tools we use help you keep those memories fresh for years to come.
In all of our communities, we use murals to refresh memories of days gone by. Often, these murals are depictions of “the good old days,” when children played worry-free on the streets and men wore fedoras as a part of their everyday attire. While life may not have been exactly that way, these murals do help our residents remember their own lives during this time, whether they were those children playing in the streets or young adults on their way to new horizons.
These murals are also often emulations of paintings found in the area surrounding our communities. For instance, our Acworth location features a large Coca-Cola mural. The exact same one can be found in Downtown Acworth. We have found that, by including these large familiar paintings within our communities, our residents don’t feel so separated and distant from the lives they once led and the people they love.
Our Memory Stations
For seniors with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, forgetting small parts of their lives can be incredibly frustrating. Not remembering friends or family members, or how to perform the tasks that once came so easily to you, can cause issues like depression and reclusiveness. It’s never a good feeling to feel like you are losing your identity, so Dogwood Forest has special memory stations in place to help prevent that from happening.
These memory stations are filled with small things that bring back memories of years gone by. For instance, we have one that is all about fishing. There is a book about making memories with grandchildren while you are out on the lake. In addition, there are things like lures and reels that residents can handle to help their minds remember the skill of using them. These small parts also help our residents keep their motor skills in top condition. The memory station pictured to the right is all about baseball, to remind residents of familiar pastimes.
Other Comforts of Home
At Dogwood Forest, we incorporate as much natural lighting as we can to better the health of our clients. We have also found that having an aquarium in the community boosts cognitive skills and has other health benefits. However, we also know that having small comforts can go a long way. That’s why we have various gardening areas to help our residents keep up an old routine — or develop a new one.
For residents with a bit of musical talent, we also have at least one piano in each community. Having this instrument at their disposal allows residents to maintain the fine cognitive and motor skills that come with playing music. For those not so musically inclined, different board games and other fun activities offer the same benefits, and also help build friendships and relationships with other residents.
At the end of the day, coming into a brand new environment comes with its fair share of stress. While we cannot eliminate all of it, the comforts we offer and the assistance we provide can keep stress to a minimum. To learn more about the services we offer in our different communities around Atlanta, contact us today.