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Focus on the right flooring for dementia


John Mellor, Polyflor’s Market Manager for safety flooring, explains why selecting a floor covering embodying modern, dementia-friendly design principles is increasingly important and spotlights the research behind the thinking


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ccording to latest figures from the Alzheimer’s Society, more than 850,000 people are living with dementia in the UK – and the rate of diagnosis is rising.


Clearly, healthcare buildings need to be future-proofed to


meet all the required design requirements and contribute to an improved quality of life for those living with dementia. Implementing dementia-friendly design principles in new or


refurbished facilities will be beneficial in the longer term, ensuring flexibility in design and prolonging the life cycle of a building. Along with appropriate acoustics, lighting and signage to aid


navigation, the floor and walls of a healthcare environment are integral components of the interior space. They can provide a


homely, welcoming and non-institutional feel to reduce anxiety and stress for those living with dementia. If someone with dementia feels more relaxed and


comfortable because of the interior environment surrounding them, they’re also less likely to be disorientated and potentially suffer a fall or accident. Dementia-friendly flooring is appropriate for a range of


diverse settings including housing, sheltered extra-care housing, dementia hubs and respite care, day centres, hospitals, hospices, rehabilitation and intermediate care facilities as well as residen- tial care and nursing home environments. Vinyl is well recognised as a flooring type used regularly in the healthcare sector due to its ‘easy to clean’ properties and Continued overleaf...


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