Design For ADHD
ADHD is a spectrum disorder, and so everyone experiences it in different ways. There are some common effects, such as difficulty organizing or maintaining routines, but the solutions are as unique as the people involved. That’s why we don’t have a particular “thing” we do for ADHD. We work with people to build customized solutions.
In our experience, people with ADHD don’t need specialty design. Instead, we need to discover the points of mismatch between how our brains work and our space works. It can be a small matter of realizing that you need multiple sets of scissors placed in task-based zones; or it can be realizing that you need morning instead of evening sun in your bedroom.
It’s a joy to create a beautiful space that helps a person achieve a better quality of life
We created our Structured Space Design Method to use with clients. Together, we investigate the unique ways that ADHD is affecting one or more members of a household. Once the difficulties are well defined, there are often a variety of solutions that present themselves, and we can pick and choose based on the scope of the project.
People with ADHD rely heavily on visual memory. Design supports include: visual cuing with colour; open storage design; supportive lighting design
The types of distractions that people experience vary, but often they cluster around particular senses. Design supports include: acoustic dampening; lighting design; addressing tactile experiences
The executive function difficulties that people with ADHD face can lead to an experience of “spinning your wheels” when you try to do something. Design supports include: single-purpose zones; logical flows and organization; colour blocking and sensory queuing
Every extra step in a task is a moment where the task can be forgotten or abandoned. Design supports include: functional zoning, task centres, space planning
Completing tasks and moving through routines can be helped by immediate, small rewards. Design supports include: aesthetically pleasing design that is completed by finishing a task; choosing items with good affordances; use sensory rewards such as a satisfying “click” into place