Hartlepool Care Home Opens Innovative ‘Indoor Garden’ Dementia Therapy Room.

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photo (1) photo (2) photoA ground-breaking garden themed sensory room has just opened at Yohden Care Complex in Blackhall colliery which will be used as part of dementia therapy sessions at the home.

The ‘garden’ was designed so that one half resembles a back garden and the other half a park and will feature in a variety of different therapy sessions to benefit clients with dementia.

The back garden section features hanging baskets, ‘brick’ walls, window boxes so residents can grow flowers, a fence complete with growing ivy and climbing roses, and an artificial rockery that residents can rearrange and ‘plant’ imitation flowers in to create their own unique landscaping designs.

The park has been designed to look like a wooded country green complete with outdoor seating so that residents can enjoy an alfresco dining experience or sit and chat with family and friends. Outdoor noises such as bird songs and the sound of a stream are also played when the room is in use to further enhance the sensory experience.

The idea for the room was first thought of my Care Manager Maxine Lee: “The idea came following on-going gardening therapy that we hold at the home. As anyone who enjoys gardening knows, gardens have a great therapeutic benefit. They provide a peaceful, relaxing place and can help to ease anxiety and stress.

They are also great for reminiscence therapy as residents enjoy talking about their own gardens and take part in familiar activities such as picking flowers and growing plants and herb.

It encourages residents with dementia to think creatively by creating their own uniquely designed plot and has been shown to slow the rate of cognitive decline.

The added benefit of the indoor garden is that gardening therapy can now continue all year round, regardless of weather conditions.”

Among the activities typically associated with gardening, the room can also be used by residents and their families and friends as a quiet place to socialise and as a games room with outdoor activities such as lawn darts, bowls and skittles.

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