Paint colours for the elderly

Whether you're the designer choosing the colour scheme or the property owner or manager trying to decide what would be best, painting a rest home probably won't be the easiest decision you'll have to make.

Finding a paint colour that is modern yet inoffensive can be a balancing act, especially if it's your first time making this kind of decision.

While the choice ultimately lies with you and anyone else on the decision-making team, here are some tips you might consider when deciding on the interior design of that rest home or retirement village.

How to decide

Get into the headspace of the elderly (not for too long!) and think about what they might like. You could consider that the mood you want to create will be one of warmth, security and harmony.

If you can achieve this with a variety of colours, you may be able to boost interest in the world and thereby help with cognitive function.

Pale, soft pastels might instantly spring to mind when thinking about appropriate hues, but they may not be the best solution as they can be difficult to decipher for older eyes, and don't generally have the vitality that can stimulate minds and moods.

Instead, aim for soft shades of red or orange, which can both warm the feel of a room and keep energy levels at their best. Similarly, peaches, apricots, tans and pinks do a good job too.

Studies have shown that soft pinks and beiges alongside soft blues and greens work together to create an emotionally supportive environment for nursing and rest homes.

Lastly, don't forget that you have plenty of choices in wallpaper too. The same guidelines apply in terms of colour, only with some detailing and patterning thrown in.

You can get simple designs that work with the colour scheme to liven up a room without making the space too cluttered and busy.

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