Our mission at Creative Art Co is to make art WORK. In designing for dementia, we seek to make art not only work, but to multi-task - to calm and soothe the spirit, to engage and sometimes to help orient a person to the space and task at hand. To this end, we have designed a number of "wall wraps" on a durable, laminated (but non-glare) material with imagery that offers the "look and feel" of home.Read More
Making Art Work
The modern tendency in Long Term Care Facilities is to afford their Memory Care Residents as much liberty and self-initiated activity as possible while protecting their safety.
To this end, exit doors are often disguised or at least de-emphasized to prevent elopement opportunities and to mitigate responsive behaviours that arise from encountering a locked door.
Once these measures are in place, safe areas can be enhanced in order to encourage places of interest in which residents may engage with fulfilling activities. You may be familiar with our Exit Diversion doors. Here is something new! We have recently installed this treatment on glass doors in an Ontario Memory Care Home to attract residents towards this secure Garden area situated off the Dining room. Previously, the doors blended with the windows and weren't easily seen-
Staff have declared how much nicer and less "institutional" this area now looks. I think we can enhance this whole scene with one more thing....a nice bit of bright signage to invite residents to continue through the door to the Garden (our peel-and-stick signage can be removed, stored and replaced after rainy or winter days prevent this activity).
Not all homes have secured outdoor areas for residents, but there are other ways to attract residents to participate in safe in-home activities. Creative Art Co are here to help, making Art WORK!
Visit us at http://www.creativeartco.com
We are often asked if we can help by using a creative solution that would prevent accidental intrusions into resident's rooms on Memory Care Floors. These troubled rooms are invariably located at the end of a hallway and are entered when other residents are confused as to their location and wondering how to proceed when the hallway ends. Many of these residents may also be "exit seeking" - a common behaviour on Memory Care Floors.
When the wrong room is entered in this way, it leads to unwelcome surprises for both the person residing in the end-of-hall room and for the "intruder" who may believe the room is theirs or that the door they entered would lead somewhere else. In fact this scenario is one that can lead to resident-to-resident aggression or at the very least some frustration and anxiety.
We would like to share a recent project at a home in London, Ontario. It is a fairly simple design and yet it proved to be very successful in mitigating this particular problem. We invite you to read a summary of its success by a member of their Behaviour Support Team below the image.
"We the BSO team, are always looking for innovative ideas to effectively diminish or eliminate triggers of responsive behaviours. We had been challenged with a recurring circumstance that would often trigger a negative chain of events.....many residents don't recognize or pick up on cues that identify when they are maybe violating the personal boundaries and space of others. Residents who wander or are confused would often end up pooled into these end rooms as they would be drawn to the doors on the expectation of an exit at the end of the hallway. The residents who live in these rooms would be obviously and notably upset with the intrusion and have even reacted aggressively.
Creative Art Co to the rescue! Thankfully, the camouflaging effects of painting (wrapping) the end doors to create an illusion of a continuous wall (when the doors are all closed) has been effective in deterring these disoriented and/or wandering residents. They still may go down the hallways, but they are less inclined to turn door handles or enter rooms.
To address the issue of confusion for those residents whose rooms are "disguised", we found that because we have name plates and shadow boxes beside the doors to identify each resident, residents that live in those rooms have not been adversely affected. Also the end private rooms tend to house either residents who have a higher cognitive capacity or are escorted/portered to their rooms anyway and don't need to wayfind on their own. The benefit of not having unwelcome guests (leading to altercations) far outweighs any drawbacks from this initiative.
Since this project has been completed with success on the first floor, we are looking forward to continuing on the 3rd floor. We'd like to thank both of you for your compassion, creativity, work ethic and professionalism. We are so pleased with such a positive impact this has had on the residents. Thank you!"
Well, we are thrilled that it worked out! We always learn from our clients who kindly work with us in troubleshooting obstacles to harmonious co-habitation in Memory Care. Thank-you!
We plan to have end-of-hall kits as seen here available in our shop as a do-it-yourself remedy for Memory Care Floors. Coming soon.
All the best
Karen and Brian
Creative Art Co
Introducing the Interactive Flower Mural by Creative Art Co (www.creativeartco.com) - bringing colour and meaningful activity to Memory Care Floors of Long Term Care Facilities. Now in reproduction and installed same day to LTC facilities in South-Western Ontario.Read More
After over 130 door disguises, we have rarely found two doors the same! In addition to this challenge, a special care floor (whether "Memory Care" Alzheimer residences or Behaviour units) in Long Term or Hospital will have different functional requirements and colour schemes.Read More
My 94 year-old father was, and still is, an amazing inspiration to us. Getting to that age without any medication and living independently (got his driver's license again this year), was not just good luck and good management, but likely also, good genetics. Nevertheless, when our mother died two years ago (she "ran the show"), we started to notice some mild cognitive decline, not enough to stop him going down to supper at the appropriate time in his Retirement Home, or to not remember where his local variety store was to obtain milk or eggs, but in little things....Read More