Navigating dementia can be a challenging journey, and dementia care has many facets – offering assistance and support, encouraging connection, promoting health, safety, and happiness, etc. It also includes finding healthy ways to increase joy and purpose, and manage symptoms associated with dementia. Fortunately, several studies have shown that light can significantly benefit those living with dementia.
According to USC News, exposure to natural light during the day, especially in the morning, can enable people with dementia to reset their internal clock, allowing them to have more energy during the day and to sleep better at night.
As a memory and dementia care provider in South Dakota, Peaceful Pines Senior Living knows how valuable natural light can be to an individual’s health and well-being. We are sharing the benefits of exposure to natural light for individuals living with dementia and how you can bring more of it into your home.
Benefits of Natural Light
Being exposed to natural light helps reset our inner circadian rhythm, which is our biological, internal clock. When this clock is not in sync with our lifestyle, our sleep patterns are impacted, and we do not have a restful night.
Natural light helps us get back on track, and the light helps our bodies produce serotonin and endorphins, called the “feel good” hormones. The more significant amount of natural light we get, the more endorphins our bodies produce, which helps reduce our feelings of anxiety, sadness, and stress.
In addition, exposure to natural light helps our bodies produce vitamin D, which is essential for promoting strong bones, supporting the immune system, and reducing feelings of depression.
Getting More Natural Light Indoors
Bringing natural light indoors can be challenging as some homes have a limited number of windows due to the design and layout. But, whether we realize it or not, we all crave light; it’s the reason we feel more productive and happy on sunny days.
If possible, open blinds and draperies, move large pieces of furniture out of the way of windows, and lighten up the paint on walls so the color reflects light instead of absorbing it.
While not as impactful as natural light, artificial light can also help people living with dementia. White light that simulates sunlight and brings daylight indoors for effective light therapy can boost focus and energy.
Spend More Time Outside
Often, people living with dementia will experience symptoms such as agitation, anger, and more. As dementia progresses, these symptoms may increase in frequency. Adding a good daily regimen of daylight exposure can help manage these symptoms by boosting mood.
When the weather cooperates, people living with dementia will significantly benefit from spending time outside as the body reacts positively while taking in the natural sunlight and clean, crisp air. People exposed to natural light during the day eat better, smile more, are happier, and sleep better at night.
Our Peaceful Pines communities across South Dakota feature beautiful outdoor spaces and walking paths to encourage residents to get moving outside. Our memory care apartments feature large windows while our memory care communities feature enclosed secure outdoor patio access for comfort and safety. In addition, various security features are in place to ensure memory care residents can safely explore their surroundings.
Consider Dementia Care Communities
When someone you care about is living with Alzheimer’s, dementia, or another memory impairment that requires supportive care, Peaceful Pines Senior Living is here to support you and your loved one.
Natural light is highly beneficial to all people, especially those living with dementia. Open those blinds and take a walk outside – both will do you a world of good! We invite you to contact Peaceful Pines Senior Living today to learn more about our memory and dementia care communities, support, and services.