In the moment: designing for late stage dementia

This paper presents international multidisciplinary design research to support the wellbeing of people living with dementia. The LAUGH project aims to develop playful artefacts that will contribute to non-pharmacological personalised approaches to caring for people living with late stage dementia in residential care. This paper presents the context for this research and explains the initial stages of the work currently in progress.

An inclusive participatory methodology is described in which key experts including: health professionals, technologists, materials scientists and carers of people living with dementia are informing the development of design concepts. A positive design approach in which designing for pleasure, personal significance and virtue underpin the work. The initial stages of the research have identified the significance of: playfulness, sensory stimulation, hand use and emotional memory. This paper contends that designs should aim to promote ‘in the moment’ living in order to support subjective wellbeing of people living with late stage dementia.

Citation

Treadaway, C., Prytherch, D., Kenning, G., and Fennell, J., (2016) 'In the moment: designing for late stage dementia', Design Research Society (Proceedings of 50th Anniversary Conference, Brighton, June 27-30). Design Research Society, pp. 1-16