Creating a Comfortable Home Environment
For seniors, living out their older years in their homes can mean a lot of time spent in the same physical space and environment. Growing older can often mean spending less time outside the home overall, whether it be as a result of health issues, reduced social involvements, or just the fact that a greater sense comfort might exist within the home. For this reason, it is important that seniors home environment not only meet their physical needs in terms of mobility and accommodation to the various changes that come along with aging, but also that their homes feel like spaces that are comfortable, pleasant, and filled with positive energy.
Creating a Positive Space
Seniors and their caregivers have the ability to set up places of residence with tones of positivity and comfort so that the time that seniors spend in their homes is as pleasant and positive as possible. The following are some considerations that can help in the process of arranging and designing a friendly and enjoyable living space:
- Declutter: A tidy space can help contribute to a calm and tidy mind. Clearing out clutter and unnecessary items, and ensuring that everything has an appropriate place and purpose is not only practical in the sense that it can ensure things are easy to find and spaces are easy to navigate, but it can also help promote a better mental state and sense of clarity. Clutter can be distracting, stressful, and unpleasant to live with, but having a clean and tidy space can help to clear the mind and help seniors to feel a sense of calm when they enter their homes, rather than feeling overwhelmed by stuff.
- Think About Colour: While colour may seem an arbitrary thing at first thought, the colours that we are exposed to can actually influence our emotions. Every person’s preferences and reactions to colour are unique, so finding the best colours to suit a person’s space can involve a little exploration, but ensuring that seniors’ homes are filled with colours that evoke the emotions they wish to feel when they are at home can help contribute to their enjoyment and comfort levels.
- Remove Negativity: It can be hard to feel at peace in one’s own home if the furniture, pictures, or knick-knacks that lie around every corner bring up unpleasant feelings. Identify items or elements within the home with which negative feelings or memories are attached so that they can be removed from the space.
- Add Positivity: Just as items can be attached to negative emotions, different items can also exist as pleasant reminders of positive memories or thoughts. Things that bring a smile to seniors’ faces or add some joy to their day should be emphasized so that seniors can feel uplifted and happy by the things that surround them.
- Let There Be Light: For many people, any exposure to sunlight and fresh air from outdoors is powerful enough to help lift their spirits and put them in a good mood. For this reason, it can be helpful to emphasize the natural light offered through windows.
- Invite Nature Inside: House plants can serve many purposes beyond just being nice to look at. Plants can help to clean and re-oxygenate the air inside, and can offer an opportunity for seniors to care for and nurture something that also adds beauty to their homes and fosters a sense of connectedness with nature.
- Separate Areas: Spending a significant amount of time within the home can often make it difficult to feel as though different activities have any separation from one another. Making conscious decisions relating to what area of the house certain activities occur in can help to create a healthy level of separation and can help the home feel more open and varied.
The physical spaces that surround us can meaningfully affect our state of mind and emotional well-being, so seniors and their caregivers should take some time to think about how best to set up the home so that it is not only practical, but also an enjoyable place to be.