Dementia friendly flooring transition

The specification of dementia friendly flooring transition profiles has become an integral part of interior design considerations in care homes, and places where people living with dementia may reside.

Part of the research undertaken by the Dementia Services Development Centre (DSDC) at Stirling University has identified that people living with dementia benefit from a calming and safe environment around them. This has included colour design considerations for the floor, wall and ceiling decor. They require some locations to show a contrast, such as steps on stairs or skirtings between walls and floors. In others, to avoid the risk of a fall, there should be very little tonal difference, such as adjoining floorcoverings; particularly where they may change between two different rooms.

Light Reflectance Values (LRVs) of flooring materials are used to measure the contrast differences between different products. DSDC and BS8300:2009 recommend a LRV difference of 30 between critical surfaces where a contrast is needed. However, when highlighting a junction is not safe, the LRV difference should be between zero and 10 at most (less is better) – and shiny aluminium or brass strips that glare are definitely out!

In the case of doorways, and different floorcovering joints, the choice can be difficult. Since there are three products (two floorcoverings and a transition profile) that need to have very low LRV differences between each of them. Three points is ideal!

Quantum Flooring Solutions has developed a new UPVC transition profile (QTP38T) which comes in a choice of 14 different calming colours. These give specifiers and flooring contractors the options they need to select a safe and through coloured transition profile between floorcovering joints – and achieve very low LRV differences at the same time.

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