Saturday, October 6, 2018

Nursing home offers trip down memory lane

For older people suffering with dementia, a metaphorical trip down memory lane can be good therapy. To prove this, the Five Rise Nursing Home in Bingley, West Yorkshire, England, built an artificial street resembling how Bingley looked in the '50s. Most patients have lived in Bingley for years, and remember the parade of shops, including Bingley Grocers and the Post Office. A vintage car and motorbike are parked on the indoor "street."

There's even faithfully reproduced bus stop, with original routes and timings listed on the sign. The purpose of memory lane is to provide an attractive destination for patients. Some believe they're still in their 20s or 30s and should be busy. They can sit at the bus stop and wait for a ride home from work, feeling a sense of purpose,  until they forget why they're there. The corridors of the nursing home are lined with historical photos of roads in nearby villages, and the activities center looks like a 1950s pub. Reminiscence therapy encourages patients to talk about events from their past. Evidence suggests it can improve a patient's mood and well-being.

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