Emotion communication tool for people with dementia
Who am I today? is a set of 2-colored badges depicting a range of characters representing emotions.
The intention is that persons with dementia express their feelings and state of mind by selecting a suitable badge or having it selected by their caregivers, family or friends. They can hang up the cards, lay them, pass them on …
Thus making an opening to gain insight into their emotional world in a humorous yet respectful way so care providers can respond better to the experiences of the people suffering from dementia, with well-being as a result. In addition, a game element can be added that makes it fun, light and pleasant to work with for both residents and caregivers.
Two aspects of dementia are addressed in the present design:
- communication failure about the emotional life
- the depressing forces of the disease
The characters and their related emotions are meaningfully linked to colours based on the Bioinformational emotion theory and the colour theory of Genetic Semantics.
The tool was conceived after four months of participation in the neuro clinic of the ZNA hospital and in the residential care facility Cadiz both in Antwerp Belgium and tested at the Immaculata residential care facility in Edegem Belgium in the closed Freezia department for people with severe dementia.
The communication tool is presented at the MinD international conference “Designing with and for People with Dementia: Wellbeing, Empowerment and Happiness” in Dresden Germany from 19 till 20 September 2019.