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Solo project addressing the lack of recreational products designed for people living with Dementia to improve their quality of life.

Duration :: April 2022 - June 2022 (3 Months)

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<aside> 🎉 Jammies has been recognised as the winner for the Connecting Category of the Interaction Awards 2023! **Link**

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https://awards.ixda.org/entry/2023/jammies-musical-instruments-designed-for-people-living-with-dementia/

Overview : : Jammies

Renders of the Instruments

Renders of the Instruments

Jammies are a set of musical instruments designed to improve the quality of life for people living with mild to moderate Dementia by empowering them to reminisce, improvise and jam along to music that is of personal value to them, without assuming any prior musical ability or knowledge. They are envisaged to be part of the vastly ignored recreational product ecosystem for PLWD managed by their caregivers, or music therapy professionals.

As an intervention, Jammies hope to acknowledge the fact that much like everyone else, people living with dementia are more than their condition, and have a need for recreational, fun activities.

<aside> 📢 If you would like try Jammies out for someone you’re taking care of, please feel free to reach out for the schematics and code.

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Context

Where pharmacological treatments have failed to cure, or even slow the progression of Dementia, interventions such as music, have proven to improve the quality of life for the 850,000 people affected in the UK. Caregivers’ experiences, and academic literature emphasise music’s positive impact on the affected individual’s mental and physical health. Music helps reminisce and is amongst the few social activities they can continue to participate in. But with deteriorating cognitive abilities, traditional ways of interacting with music like playing instruments and dancing become inaccessible. Even institutionalised interventions like music therapy, add up to £32000 to yearly care expenses for PLWD.

Jammies respond to these shortcomings in Dementia care by asking how might we design new ways of interfacing with music for people living with dementia; in order to empower them and improve their quality of life?

How do they work?

Jammies combine a software library of personal music and a physical instrument interface to help PLWD make melodic contributions to music they enjoy listening to.

The responsibility of setting up the instrument, which is as simple as curating a playlist of songs and plugging in the instrument to a laptop, would be taken up by the caregiver

A working prototype Demonstration (Kate Bush’s Running up That Hill)

A working prototype Demonstration (Kate Bush’s Running up That Hill)

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Taking away the possibility of making an error, Jammies empower PLWD by giving them the autonomy to express themselves through improvisation. The different instrument forms incorporate the benefits of music therapy for older adults but are also carefully built to require the use of different grips and simple motions, engaging them physically. The 5 notes on instruments give feedback in the form of visual stimulation from LEDs and haptics, such that the people living with dementia do not feel overwhelmed.

Fine Motor Control

Fine Motor Control

Sliding Action

Sliding Action

Rotary Movement

Rotary Movement

Leg Movement

Leg Movement

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