Foregrounding everyday sounds in dementia

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
DIS 2019 - Proceedings of the 2019 ACM Designing Interactive Systems Conference, 2019, pp. 71 - 83
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© 2019 Copyright is held by the owner/author(s). There has been an increased interest in researching the beneficial effects of everyday sounds, other than music on people with dementia. However, to turn this potential into concrete design applications, a qualitative understanding of how people engage with sound is needed. This paper presents the outcomes of three workshops, exploring the personal experiences evoked by soundscapes of people in early to mid-stages of dementia. Using the dementia soundboard, we provide key insights into how sounds from everyday life triggered personal associations, memories of the past, emotional responses, and the sharing of experiences. Furthermore, we identified several design considerations and practical insights for sound-based technologies in the context of dementia care. This paper sets out a path for further design-research explorations and development of concrete sound-based interventions, for enriching the everyday lives of people with dementia.
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