Evoking Memories with Smell | Health Concept

Smell a memory kit

JWT Singapore has teamed with global fragrance house Givaudan to create a first of a kind bespoke “Smell a Memory” kit – a unique innovation that harnesses the power of scent to evoke emotional memories among Alzheimer’s and dementia patients.

Worldwide 35.6 million people are affected by memory loss or Alzheimer’s. Our sense of smell has a powerful connection with memories. The ‘smell a memory’ kit was a logical response to this. It could help people to have little moments of memory. The kits are personalized and custom-created for individual patients based on each patient’s family history, ethnicity, age and personal stories. Givaudan’s perfumers, in consultation with therapists and rehabilitation experts, tailor-made and bottled unique smells such as “Bedtime Stories”, “Mom’s Cooking”, “Prayer”, “School Days” and more to provoke engagement through experiential smells. The scents used ingredients relevant to Singapore, including herbs and spices from everyday Singaporean dishes, Hainanese coffee, incense used in local temples and other scents that reminded people of school, holidays and work life.

Smell a memory kit

A number of the patients, who are often listless, withdrawn and uncommunicative, became excited and lively after smelling the kits, engaging in animated conversations with family members and therapists. That, in turn, created an equally emotional experience for family members.

The Singapore project was so successful that Givaudan now plans to extend the programme to other regions, as part of their sustainability program. JWT and Givaudan Singapore are also in the process of organizing further trails at two of Singapore’s largest hospitals.

This project shows that a creative idea can result in beautiful solutions or resources for health innovation.

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