Presented in Running with Scissors: 13th International Conference of the European Academy of Design by Angie Henriquez Martinez & Santiago de Francisco Vela.Go here to read the article
Conventional medicine uses diagnostic techniques to identify and suppress symptoms to purport to heal, assuming symptoms as the whole disease. However, these techniques ignore the relationship between mind and body, and how emotions catalyze healing or illness. Therefore, we aim to develop a meaningfulness-driven product to trigger reflection upon illness, supporting healing processes from emotional and mental fields. Homeostasis Sanatoris is a balance generator object that facilitates dialog between patients and physicians using analogies. The analogies symbolize the process we live with disease and symptoms to recover the balance our body needs. We tested the product in therapeutic sessions with both, patients and physicians. The results were very positive, successfully the reflection took place in and every person that interacted with the product could identify what they need to find their own balance.
Positive Design, Balanced, Design for health, Product, Healing
We needed to understand how our body and mind works. We are constantly stimulied by information on the outside. When we process those stimulus, we create a perception of them. That perception is the way we undestand that stimulus. So for the same stimulus, two different people might have a diferent perception. Even more, the same person might have a different perception for the same stimuli in two different moments.
That perception is translated into emotional responses, that could be postive or negative responses. Imagine you are walking in an dark alley and you suddenly stumble upon a person. If you identify that person, you might feel relief, even happy. But if you don't know that person, you might feel scare or even threaten.
Living species are highly adaptable, and that is the case of humans. We can experiment a very positive moment, and then we go back to a balanced state, as well with negative emotions. We experiment that with a cold or a flue, even though is annoying, we adapt until we get better. But how about a chronic disease? Can we stimulate our body to develop healing processes? Can we teach our body to cope and accept our diseases?
In theory, we can. But it is very difficult due to how we interpret the stimulus that surround us. So Homesotasis Sanatoris focus on three things, train our way of interpreting stimulus related to our health status. Help people to understand that the symptoms are manifestations of the disease, but no the disease it self. And in order to foster healing process, is important to reflect on how to go back to that balance explain by the adaptability. So we can learn how to adapt to very negative emotional responses and trigger positive physiological responses.
To cite this article:
Angie Henríquez Martínez & Santiago De Francisco Vela (2019) Homeostasis sanatoris. A meaningfulness-driven product that stimulates physiological healing processes, The Design Journal, 22:sup1, 615-626, DOI: 10.1080/14606925.2019.1595442