Preparing your home to care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia is difficult, but a new app launched recently can give us ideas for making our homes more accessible to those suffering.
There are almost 354,000 Australians living with dementia, and with many of the symptoms first noticed by families in the home it is important that we take the steps necessary to make our homes as secure as possible.
If the possibility of a loved one wandering into an unsafe area or disappearing outside the home is a worry for you, the Dementia-Friendly Home app to address household safety is now available thanks to a partnership between Alzheimer’s Australia Victoria and Deakin Software and Technology Innovation Laboratory.
When we are looking to care for our loved ones diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia we want to keep them at home with us for as long as possible because sometimes it’s the one place where that person can be in familiar surroundings.
When memory is an issue, the environment of the home becomes all the more important for that person, they can become more sensitive to their surroundings and often require a quiet orderly living space.
The app has a 3D experience, which takes users on a walk through the home identifying areas that they can make more dementia-friendly.
It focuses on ten dementia-enabling environment principles and recommends practical changes to the home that are also aimed at improving the quality of life for those living with dementia and their carers.
With each one of us having a differently designed home, much like the degree of memory loss for a person living with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, the app suggests small, inexpensive ideas such as placing labels with pictures on cupboard doors or using plain bed covers that contrast with walls as part of the initial survey process.
But it also provides suggestions for more significant changes that can be incorporated as the disease progresses to ensure safety issues are being addressed as they arise.
3D dementia-friendly home app: