Building comfortable and welcoming environments is key to ensuring the health and well-being of residents in a care home. Selecting the right furniture and implementing suitable interior design can pose certain challenges. It could be difficult to know which item of furniture is the most appropriate or what decorations would work best to fit each resident’s needs. There is a range of factors which need to be considered such as safety, hygiene, and orientation. In order to simplify this process, below you will find different strategies on how to optimise furniture and décor in your care home. These tips will help you achieve a combination of comfort, style, and durability.
Ensure A Safe Environment
Firstly, it is important to make sure that the surroundings of the care home are safe. Many residents often use wheelchairs or other mobility aids to help them move around. Because of this, it would be advisable to perform a thorough inspection of the facility. Be sure to check if there is any clutter which may hamper mobility or cause accidents. Look out for objects which may be in the way in corridors. You will also need to provide proper lighting maximising natural light. Ensure that there are no faulty door lock, wobbly chairs, or slippery floors.
Select The Right Beds
Choosing appropriate beds will be key to providing comfort to all your residents. You would want to provide a relaxing space especially for vulnerable residents who may struggle with their mental health. It would be advisable to research different type of beds in order to ensure the best atmosphere. It is important that beds are strong and robust suitable for all body types. Also, pressure mattresses will be an essential equipment for your residents as they can offer increased support for the spine, reducing the pressure on the body. This way, your residents will be able to have the best night’s sleep possible.
Find Appropriate Seating Options And Tables
Consider a variety of seating options both for residents’ bedrooms and communal areas as well. Apart from rise and recliner chairs, it would be important to provide clusters of seating with different heights. Don’t forget to factor in the various requirements of your residents. This can include people with challenging behaviours or those with bariatric needs. For example, NHC Group specialises in care home furniture designed to create a supportive environment for residents with varying requirements. Make sure to add leather lounge chairs and sofas for a more homely feel. Also, why not implement an over bed table for residents who may have limited mobility and bedside cabinets for extra storage space?
Implement The Perfect Room Layout
Apart from selecting the most appropriate furniture, positioning and layout will play a crucial role in your residents’ quality of life. Think about their individual needs and make decisions accordingly. For instance, you may want to ensure there is plenty of space available for wheelchair users to move freely. It is essential that you provide residents with the independence that they need in different areas of the care home. Remember to add rails and hoists around the rooms in order to support people with low mobility. Being responsive to the specific requirements of residents will offer them a better environment to live in.
Focus On Colours
Colour is an important element in care homes. In some cases, implementing the right colours may help to reduce hazards. For example, by ensuring there is enough contrast between different colours you may help a resident with dementia. If a chair blends into the colour of the wall too much, there is a higher possibility that the person might fall when sitting on the chair. However, in other cases a dark floor mat against a paler floor could appear to be a step for someone with dementia. Therefore, it is important to consider the use of colour depending on the situation. If you would like to learn more about finding a balance, read this guidance on the role of colour in care homes.
Pay Attention To Patterns
Patterns are repetitive designs which tend to offer an additional appeal to rooms. However, it is highly recommended that you take extra caution when it comes to the design of your care home. It is likely that older residents with eyesight problems will get confused when looking at rugs or artworks with complicated patterns. Therefore, it would be best to use a plain décor and simple paintings. Rooms with many different patterns can be overwhelming. Also, it is advisable to avoid using stripes as they can be considered as barriers by residents with dementia.
Provide High Levels Of Hygiene
Hygiene is one of the most important aspects of quality care. In order to ensure that the highest possible levels of hygiene are maintained, it is crucial that all items of furniture are easy to clean. Upholding a regular cleaning regime and selecting specifically designed furniture will have a significant effect on residents’ health. Removable covers from soft furnishings must be washable. You should use an antibacterial detergent to prevent the spread of bacteria. All care services in the UK are regulated by the Care Quality Commission. In order to provide the best possible service, it would be helpful to research the five key questions used at every inspection.
Implement Visual Aids
It would be beneficial to consider introducing orientation aids. For example, you might want to incorporate a variety of clear signs and pictures to help residents move confidently around the building. Other useful ideas include placing memory boxes which residents can fill with their personal items or fixtures and fittings with their family photographs. Focusing on familiar trends will help them navigate around the facility more easily and provide them with a sense of recognition of their surroundings. You may also want to use street names outside of corridors as a way of bringing back valuable memories.
Furnishing your care home is not simply about aesthetics. There are many important factors you need to consider so that you create a warm and inviting space where your residents can settle in.