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Oomph! Sensory Series: The Psychology of Colours

By April 22, 2020No Comments

During unprecedented times and at a time when the care sector is being affected enormously by the current Coronavirus situation, resident wellbeing is even more important than ever.  As part of this Oomph! are keen to support care homes with stimulating and varied content for resident engagement. We will be releasing resources based on our Oomph! skills workshops. These resources, and more, will be uploaded to our Wellbeing Resources Hub.

The second topic in our Sensory mini-series is: The Psychology of Colours

Colour psychology is the study of the effect that colours have on the moods, behaviours and feelings of people. Jack, our Regional Wellbeing Coordinator, tells us more…



Blue can help individuals feel calmer and supports with rest. Therefore, blue is used in bedrooms and quiet areas. Strong blues will stimulate clear thought and lighter blues will calm the mind and aid concentration. Blue is mentally calming & it is the colour of clear communication. Blues make a room feel bigger & blue objects do not appear to be as close to us as red ones.


This is the colour of earth and is associated with growth and life. Green is thought to reduce activity in the central nervous system and help people feel calmer. When the world about us contains plenty of green, this indicates the presence of water, and little danger of famine, so we are reassured by green, on a primitive level. Green is  the colour of balance as it is at the centre of the spectrum. It is the combination of yellow and blue, therefore it is both calming and optimistic.


Yellow is the strongest colour psychologically because it is the colour of the mind & intellect.  It is the colour of confidence, and the right yellow will lift our spirits and our self-esteem. Yellow is a key stimulating colour, and is used in activity areas to increase brainwave activity. Stimulating colours are good for those living with Alzheimer’s as the can trigger memories and cognitive function


The colour red affects us physically, therefore stimulating us and raising our pulse rates. Red can give people the impression that time is passing faster. It relates to the masculine principle and can activate the “fight or flight” instinct. Red also stimulates brain wave activity and the production of adrenaline. This warm colour has the opposite effect to blue, making a room feel smaller. It is often used for rooms that are cool in temperature.


Why not use the below colours in your activities to achieve a desired outcome or response? For example, if you are focusing on relaxion with a resident, you may choose cooler colours. You could also use the colours creatively within your planners, posters or newsletters to achieve a greater impact.