By Ross Geller
As we grow older, our bodies experience several changes that hamper their functioning.
One of the most significant and frequent problems is an impaired vision. There are numerous reasons behind the loss of vision, including cataracts and nerve damage.
While such issues generate discomfort by themselves, they become further exacerbated by the presence of bad lighting in your home. They become even bigger problems when dealing with sharp or pointed objects, such as the items you encounter in your kitchen.
Here are seven ways to improve the lighting in your kitchen for the benefit of your eyes:
1. Let in sunlight – One of the first and most overlooked ways of increasing lighting is by opening up the windows for sunlight. Sunlight acts as a natural enhancer and can make your kitchen appear not only brighter but more prominent as well. It creates a more open space and adds to the aesthetic appeal of a kitchen as well. Apart from highly increasing the brightness in the room, sunlight also has several other benefits. It is a beneficial source of vitamin D and can even eliminate certain germs and bacteria present on surfaces. Thus, ensure that your kitchen has enough natural sunlight.
2. Repaint your walls – Dark walls absorb more light and hence make rooms appear darker. It also reduces the appearance of the size of the room. Furthermore, this also reduces the reflective ability of the wall to the lighting you use and gives it a dim impression. Thus, a simple technique like painting the wall, a bright color can do wonders for the brightness of the room.
3. Increase ambient lighting – Artificial lighting plays the most vital role in illuminating a room. For older adults, using white LED lights may be preferable to using yellow lighting. A single white light can also be more cost-effective and environmentally friendly. However, at the same time, you must keep light levels well-distributed throughout the house. Sensitivity to such fluctuations increases with age, and hence, your older relative may find it difficult to adjust to this.
4. Use task lighting – While these may not be commonly used in the kitchen, task lighting is an efficient way of conducting work there. If there is a specific area of the kitchen dedicated to the cutting of vegetables, then adding a small table-like lamp to the area can significantly minimize the strain on the eyes.
5. Minimize Glare – Elderly individuals are also susceptible to the glare that occurs from lights. Thus, attempting to reduce the glare from countertops is exceptionally vital. Generally, glare occurs due to the presence of highly reflective surfaces, such as granite, found on counters. Instead of this material, you could opt for a darker marble or cement-style countertop to remove the glare. Apart from this, there are some light or lampshades that are matte or frost-like. Such lights significantly decrease the amount of light escaping from the shade. There is minimal exposure of the eyes to the sun.
6. Put lights on the ceiling – The brightness of the ceiling greatly influences the intensity in a room. Your roof acts as a natural reflector of the light below it. By adding bright and well-spaced lights, this tip could be one of the most useful in brightening up the kitchen. Furthermore, many kitchens often have an adjoining dining room. It is always good to have appropriate dining room lighting so that you do not strain your eyes while focusing on the food. This may also affect the way you eat and digest food. Hence, it is always a good practice for your dining room to be well lit.
7. Provide visual cueing using lights – Visual cueing involves using lights to demarcate shapes and edges of furniture and other items. You could add lights to the top or bottom of cabinets, around the edges of shelves or cabinets on the floor. Such lighting can act as a visual point of reference for elderly individuals and hence prevent them from knocking or walking into these items. Thus, it can prevent serious injury. Furthermore, if your floor is made up of dark wood, the reflection caused by the light creates a beautiful contrast. It looks stylish as well as functional.
Your home and the way you design it is a reflection of your unique personality. Everyone deserves the ability to create their house as they please, without any compromises. I hope this article helps you discover some of the best and easiest ways to light up your kitchen and hence make you feel at home. This can be a great gift for your home from you.
Ross Geller is a working designer and writer. Follow him on Twitter: @RossGel28388574.