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Exploring the power of colour for those living with dementia

5 June 2024

Latest News

Written byOwain Farrington

Exploring the power of colour for those living with dementia

Have you ever noticed how colours can influence our moods and behaviours? It’s fascinating how a simple splash of colour can change how we feel – whether it’s lifting our spirits, calming our nerves, or capturing our attention. For those living with dementia, colour can play a crucial role in providing support and enhancing their daily lives. At Radfield Home Care, we believe in harnessing every tool at our disposal to improve the quality of life for our clients.

Why colour choice matters for people with dementia

Colours have a unique ability to communicate with our brains faster than words. This is particularly beneficial for individuals experiencing memory loss due to dementia. Colour can help compensate for difficulties in distinguishing objects. As cognitive abilities decline and our eyes age, colours may appear washed out, making it harder to differentiate between them. This is where the careful and thoughtful use of colour can truly make a difference.

Using contrast to enhance clarity

Joshua Freitas, author of “The Dementia Concept”, emphasises the importance of using contrasting colours to provide clarity in living spaces. Contrast helps to delineate objects, mark edges, and draw attention to important elements. For example, contrasting colours can help individuals with dementia locate items on their plate or identify essential features in their environment, such as handrails or doorways.

Colours that can make a difference

While everyone has their favourite colours, certain hues have been shown to have specific effects on mood and behaviour. Here are some colours and their potential benefits:

Known for its calming properties, blue can help reduce anxiety and promote relaxation, making it ideal for bedrooms and calming spaces. Integrating blue into areas where relaxation is desired can provide a soothing backdrop that eases tension for those living with dementia.

With its soothing effect, pink can help ease aggression and create a peaceful atmosphere. Rooms decorated in soft pink hues can foster a sense of calm and tranquillity, which may be incredibly supportive for individuals experiencing agitation.

This vibrant colour can stimulate appetite and capture attention, making it useful for encouraging eating and drawing focus. Dining areas with red accents can help make mealtimes more engaging and appealing for those who may otherwise have a diminished appetite.

Lime green
Vibrant and attention-grabbing, lime green can help individuals identify important objects or people, making it useful for visual cues and safety measures. Lime green can be strategically used to highlight key areas such as doorways, emergency exits, or personal items.

While not typically recommended due to its association with darkness, black can be strategically used to prevent wandering. For instance, placing black mats near exit doors can create a visual barrier, discouraging individuals from attempting to leave unsupervised areas.

Implementing colour for dementia support

The thoughtful incorporation of colour into living environments can be a powerful tool for enhancing the daily lives of those with dementia. By understanding the impact of colour and using it strategically, Care Professionals can create spaces that are both supportive and comforting.

Enhancing clarity and safety

Using contrasting colours to enhance clarity and safety is essential in dementia care. For instance, the edge of a step can be highlighted with a bright contrasting colour to prevent falls. Similarly, essential items such as utensils or personal hygiene products can be distinguished by colour to make them easier to locate.

Promoting relaxation and well-being

Creating a calm and relaxing environment can help individuals with dementia feel more at ease. Integrating colours like blue and pink into spaces where relaxation and peace are needed can contribute significantly to the well-being of those affected by dementia.

How Radfield Home Care can integrate colour in home care

At Radfield Home Care, we understand the importance of creating supportive environments for those living with dementia. Our experienced Care Professionals are trained to use colour strategically to enhance the quality of life for our clients. Whether through home modifications or day-to-day support, we are committed to using every available tool to help our clients live comfortably and safely.

Contact us today to learn more about Radfield Home Care’s high-quality private care services designed to support those living with dementia. Explore how we champion care that people want as well as need, helping our nation age well by keeping people connected to the things that matter most to them.


Owain Farrington

Owain Farrington

Head of Marketing

An experienced content creator with a varied marketing skillset. Owain is an accomplished verbal and visual communicator.

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