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Interior Design Theory Presentation- The Restorative Environment

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Monique Riles

on 24 October 2012

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Transcript of Interior Design Theory Presentation- The Restorative Environment

The Restorative Environment A presentation by Logan Andreasen,
Maria Toro, and Monique Riles What are the Impacts of
Mental Fatigue? Voluntary vs. Involuntary
Attention What is Voluntary Attention? Involuntary Attention Social Impacts Behavioral Impacts Mood Impacts Cognitive Impacts What is Mental Fatigue or Directed Attention Fatigue? Mental Fatigue a psycho biological state caused by prolonged periods of demanding cognitive activity and characterized by subjective feelings of “tiredness” and “lack of energy” Mental fatigue can affect people for both short and long periods of time. It is the result of brain over- activity, a condition where the brain cells become exhausted much like our bodies do when we have been physically over-active. The mind is directly affected
when a person suffers from mental fatigue.

Some impacts include:
- Difficulty understanding new concepts
- Impaired memory
- Slowed reasoning
- Increase in simple mistakes
- Inability to stay on task
- Memory Lapses
- Learning Difficulties
- Reasoning Problems Mental Fatigue also affects your behavior and
interaction with others.

People experiencing mental fatigue suffer from detachment, isolation, irritability, depression, aggression Moodiness, Frustration, Overwhelmed, Emotional Shutdown Mental fatigue usually hinders social interactions.

It may cause the individual to appear unapproachable causing others to refrain from interacting with them. Also known as directed attention, voluntary attention is the energy and attention used to focus on a specific task at hand. It is essential for problem solving and requires an energy output from the user.

Voluntary Attention can lead to mental fatigue Mental fatigue caused through voluntary attention can
be restored through the use of involuntary attention.

Involuntary attention: (stimulus driven attention) is used when the mind switches focus to sudden changes in the environment (wind blowing, leaves rustling, change in light). Causes of Mental Fatigue
- Working the brain too hard
- Not getting enough sleep
- Lack of exercise
- Poor diet and dehydration
-Late work nights
- Sleep deprivation Symptoms of mental fatigue include a sense of lethargy and an inability to concentrate. It can have serious effects on your cognitive functioning; decreasing your vigilance, secondary task performance and problem solving, and lessening situation awareness. A Video! Competition for attention (media, growing technology) has provided people with useless information. People now have to extend more effort to use directed attention on important information, which makes it harder to deal with growing mental fatigue. Voluntary Attention Information:

“Pay attention” is to direct attention, engaging voluntary attention.

Engage in higher thinking processes, such as problem-solving.

Requires effort, cannot be kept up for long periods of time. Limitations of Involuntary Attention:
1) Dependent on an interesting environment, which is not always available
2)Does not take advantage of higher mental processes, instead focuses on simple and direct responses.
People suffering from mental fatigue have difficulty concentrating, difficulty with decision making, are impatient, may make risky choices, are less likely to help someone in distress, and have difficulty making and going through with plans.
Extreme cases have lead to alcohol and drug abuse
Bad for creativity Eden Alternative The Eden Alternative is a small not-for-profit organization making a big difference in the world. Based on the core belief that aging should be a continued stage of development and growth, rather than a period of decline. They are dedicated to eliminating the plagues of loneliness, helplessness, and boredom that make life intolerable in most of today’s long-term care facilities. Loneliness To give as well as receive care- When care giving and receiving are balanced, people are healthier and happier Fill daily life with variety and spontaneity by creating an environment in which unexpected and unpredictable interactions and happenings can take place Therapeutic Design What is a Therapeutic Design? Surrounding conditions, forces, or factors that facilitate the process of therapy Therapeutic Environment theory stems from the fields of environmental psychology (the psycho-social effects of environment), psychoneuroimmunology (the effects of environment on the immune system), and neuroscience (how the brain perceives architecture) Four Factors Needed to Create a More Therapeutic Environment Reduce or eliminate environmental stressors
Provide positive distractions
Enable Social support
Give a sense of control In general, Therapeutic Environments have been proven to be cost-effective by improving patient outcomes, reducing length of stay, and by enhancing staff satisfaction, recruitment, and retention of staff. To create a therapeutic environment, all members of the design team—medical planner, architect, engineer, interior designer, site and landscape designer,—are responsible for using the power of design to find solutions that will affect the patients and staff in positive ways, throughout the facility; from the parking lot, approach, and entry, to the public spaces, clinical spaces, and ultimately the patient room. Artwork and aesthetic can enhance the soothing and calming qualities of a space
Reduce or eliminate sources of noise
Appropriate lighting system
Maintain good indoor air quality Ways to reduce Environmental Stressors: - Views to nature (especially in “high stress” locations within the space)
- Access to nature, healing gardens
- Music (e.g. live piano in a public area)
- Mild physical exercise Ways to provide Positive Distractions: Family zone in patient room
Ensure culturally appropriate environments
Consider sociopetal versus sociofugal spaces Enable Social Support:
The ability of a person to control their environment directly contributes to their comfort level or, in the case of health care facilities, successful patient outcomes
- Choice of light (e.g. dimming controls)
- Room service/ menu selection
- Choice of artwork
- Volume and programming of televisions
- Provide mini-medical library and computer terminals so patients can research their conditions and treatments Give a Sense of Control Every design project should begin with a review of existing available literature on design interventions that have been proven to be successful.
Checklists can assist designers and users in evaluating existing conditions and in setting goals for new facilities planning and design. Design goals that are set and clearly defined at the beginning of a project can serve as research questions to be answered by Post-Occupancy Surveys, data collection, and evaluation. Restorative Environments What is a Restorative Environment? Setting in which a person can recover from mental fatigue.
Restorative environments create benefits when one can feel secure enough to let down their guard. When one can become absorbed in the environment without feeling vulnerable.
--Rest and recuperation There are two basic themes in the recovery process 1. People’s behavior depends on models of the world that is kept in their heads. That breaks down to ability to handle situations. Even when in new situations, people can connect similarities to past experiences which lets them know how to react. 2. When people have no trouble running the model, voluntary attention can take a break. Four Components of A Restorative Environment Removing oneself to a different setting can help the mind think of different things. Being away: Extent does not necessarily pertain to the physical environment. It can be an imagined “place” or part of the environment that evokes connectivity to past and future.

Just being away does not guarantee restoration. Restorative experiences are often described as “being in a whole different world”. The environment must contain scope and connectedness.

Scope: environment is large enough for person to move around contentedly, without having to worry about running into boundaries of the model they are running.

Connectedness: Parts of environment must be perceived as belonging to something larger. This means people do not have to come up with new model every instant, but can allow themselves to run on “autopilot”


Fascination: Fascinating stimulus engages involuntary attention. Without fascination, the model people are running could turn into distraction or daydreaming. Can be found in objects in environment. Challenges and predicting uncertain events can be fascinating to individuals. Restorative environments can provide a variety of fascination.

Nature as Restorative Environments Benefits of nature:
Restorative environments are not confined to nature, but natural environments seem to be particularly restorative. Kaplan and Kaplan identified the four characteristics of a restorative environment in relation to nature: Nature as Restorative Environments Because they are not readily available, natural settings such as beaches, mountains and rivers are the preferred settings for “getting away” Being away- Extent comes easily in natural environments, although large areas of land aren’t necessary to accomplish a feeling of being in a whole new world. Small areas can provide a sense of seclusion that feels like a completely different space. Extent- Natural fascinations knowns as “soft fascinations”. Soft fascinations hold the attention of the brain in an undemanding manner, so thoughts can wander. Soft fascinations include sunsets, views of plants, and cloud patterns to name a few. These things are considered pleasurable, and in that context people can think about things that would be too painful or confusing in normal circumstances. Fascination- People travel to natural environments for a specific purpose (fishing, hiking, etc.) that these spaces accommodate, increasing the compatibility between the two. Compatibility-
Nature connected to:
Quicker surgery recoveries
More physical activity (less childhood obesity)
Higher blood glucose levels
Improvement of independence of the elderly
Lower mortality rates
Decrease in cardiovascular diseases Physical Studies related to the benefits of nature: 1) Research conducted in prison environments shows that cell windows with views of nature resulted in lower stress rates and sick calls made by prisoners.

2) A study in which tests were administered to students with views to nature and students without views to nature showed that the students with the views had better scores. Brown, P. , Maller, C., Pryor, A., St. Leger, L., and Townsend, M. (2005, December 22) Restorative Environments in
Hospitals and Other Facilities Research indicates that designing the hospital as a healing environment has a positive impact on the safety and well-being of patients. Likewise, the physical environment is a key to nurses’ productivity, job satisfaction, and stress levels. Incorporating green spaces such as courtyards, greenhouses, and indoor plants enhance the livability and provide the space with a restorative environment Research was conducted in a children’s hospital in Malaysia to view the benefits of incorporating restorative environments into design.
-Hospitalization is a source of stress to children. -As a result, the children will become withdrawn, bored, anxious, and fearful. Children in the Batu Pahat Hospital were introduced to a garden implemented into the design of the hospital. Information was then gathered from the patients, the mothers of the children and the staff of the hospital.
Overall, the study showed a positive change in the children.
Cognitively, they went from being fearful and anxious to calm and cheerful while in the gardens.
Physically, they went from a sedentary state to an active state, which increased recovery time.
Socially, the children shifted to being nervous and reclusive to playing with the other children and being overall more cooperative. The study concludes that the implementation of the restorative space of the garden was beneficial to the children and allowed them to heal and function in a progressive manner. Eden Alternative Introductory Presentation. Retrieved from http://www.edenalt.org/images/stories/tools_for_registery/an_introduction_to_the_eden_alternative_1_hr.pdf Smith, R., Watkins, N., (2010, June 18). Therapeutic Environments. Retrieved from http://www.wbdg.org/resources/therapeutic.php#desc

Jaffe, E. (2010, May 15). This Side of Paradise: Discovering Why The Human Mind Needs Nature. Retrieved from http://personalsustainability.com/tag/voluntary-attention/ (2010, October 7). Psychology: Attention. Retrieved from http://visionapexcollege.blogspot.com/2010/10/psychology-attention.html Nauert PhD, R. (2011). Going Green Benefits Physical, Mental Health.Psych Central. Retrieved on October 24, 2012, from http://psychcentral.com/news/2011/04/20/going-green-benefits-physical-mental-health/25492.html Brown, P. , Maller, C., Pryor, A., St. Leger, L., and Townsend, M. (2005, December 22) Healthy nature healthy people: ‘contact with nature’ as an upstream health promotion intervention for populations Retrieved from: Loving companionship-
Elders deserve easy access to human and animal companionship Helplessness Boredom Mental Fatigue Thank You! Activity Time! Choose your most Restorative Environment from the following...... 1. Natural Environment 2. Quiet Room 3. Urban Environment/ Nightclub 4. Other... Fascination: Wants of the individual are supported by the environment. Compatibility:
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