08 Aug Decorating a Waiting Room
Decorating a Waiting Room
How many times have we been to a waiting room of a healthcare facility and have looked forward to a caring environment? We may not say it aloud, but we are hoping deep down that the waiting room experience be as comfortable and quick as possible. A patient that spends time in a waiting area does not need an additional dose of stress; hence an effective interior design truly plays a very important role.
The waiting room of any facility is an essential part of any patient’s experience. Anxiety, stress, uncertainty, fear – these are just some of the emotions felt by patients as they enter a waiting room of a clinic. Creating a warm, inviting waiting room is essential to help patients feel much more relaxed. What the patients feel and see at the waiting room are a reflection of the quality of healthcare they can expect. Every patient wants to feel confident and assured that they are important and will receive the best possible care. Careful attention to patients’ conditions and feelings as they enter the waiting room is of utmost importance. The branding of the healthcare facility can be seen through the correct selection of colors, finishes, furniture, lighting and accessories.
A waiting room is, no doubt, the first opportunity to show the patients that they are warmly welcomed and will be well cared for. As they say, first impressions always matter. Here are some suggestions on creating an impressive and comfortable waiting room:
Displaying Wall Art
Adding a focal point in a space is one of the most basic principles in interior design. It must be interesting enough to have a lasting impression to the viewer. We can easily add focal points by placing really interesting artworks that stand out and capture the attention of your patients – but keeping in mind how it flows into the overall interior design theme.
If there are no windows or views in the waiting room, adding paintings with nature as subjects are known to be beneficial to patients, as it helps them relax more.
To jazz up your waiting room, you can opt to use wallpaper instead of paint on your walls. While wall colors help set the emotional tones of the space, wallpaper does this and a bit more. Wallpapers add more texture and depth to your space, creating a warmer and more inviting room.
For a more relaxing atmosphere, avoid wallpaper with busy and loud prints. You can mix plain textured wallpapers with simpler patterned ones to add more visual interest in the space.
Books to Impress
A staple in any waiting room is reading materials. Many place magazines in waiting areas so that patients and visitors have something to read while they wait for their appointment, However, this may be a problem if they are repeat patients; reading the same magazines repeatedly is not exactly fun. Consider investing in coffee table books instead of regular magazines. While returning patients may find themselves reading the same coffee table books on their next visit, these special reading materials usually contain more fascinating pictures and entertaining content. Patients may even look forward to continue reading the same book when they return.
It is important to choose quality coffee table books that are interesting, visually-engaging, and would cater to your patients age range. These may be books about slice of life, home, animals, and travel – books that would grab the patient’s attention and take their focus off of the wait time.
Scenting Your Waiting Room
Using pleasant aromas in your waiting room can go a long way, as it is one of the most effective ways you can make your patients feel more comfortable and less anxious. It has been scientifically proven that scents are connected with our memory – thus making us recall good memories with certain aromas. Scenting your waiting room helps patients feel less stressed and more calm before and during their appointment.
Choose an aroma diffuser that is shaped like a vase so it can double as a decorative accessory and can easily be displayed in any area.
Lavender and vanilla scents are both known to promote positive effects on humans. It helps people relax and reduces stress and anxiety.
Adding Decorative Lighting
Another way to help patients relax is to incorporate proper use and play of lighting. A well-lit waiting room aids in making visitors feel more comfortable and at ease. Providing a variety of lighting options such as general lighting and decorative lights help create a friendlier and homier ambience.
Table lamps are a common feature of waiting rooms. Aside from its softer glow adding to a homey ambience, table lamps also help patients relax more.
Wall sconces are useful for enhancing mood in waiting rooms. They are also used to accentuate and frame different aspects in the room, by placing them on either side of paintings, mirrors, and doorways.
Aside from their decorative purpose, floor lamps can also be used as task lighting for reading.