A YewdaleKestrel® anti-ligature accessory is not only an advanced safety device, but a useful part of the treatment process, as Yewdale’s Business Development Manager Greg explains.
When you first learn about ligature points: what they are, how they can be formed, you suddenly become very aware how everyday objects can become a danger. A ligature point needn’t always be from a particularly strong or permanently fixed object, just an innocent item used in an unlikely position can cause it to become a risk.
The only way to furnish a room that is safe for mental health service users that are prone to self-harm or suicide attempts is to normalise as much as possible but ensure safety is permanent. Without such devices the service user would be forced to see out their treatment in a sparse room, which is simply needless and cruel, not to mention potentially detrimental to a person’s recovery.
Some individuals in this situation are tenacious and determined, finding ever creative ways to jam or block or damage an anti-ligature device to the extent where it can be used as a ligature point.
Doors, door handles, hinges, curtains, curtain rails, blinds, light fittings, windows, toilet roll holders, toilet seats, towel rails, coat hooks, shower heads, sink taps and even soap dishes pose a risk.
Let’s think for a second about the rather mundane but actually quite useful function these objects fulfil. Doors provide privacy, curtains assist with sleep. Soap dishes help with hygiene and coat hooks provide a place to hang a dressing gown, towels or a light bag.
A YewdaleKestrel® coat hook has been cleverly designed to remove any potential risk whilst functioning as a coat hook should. It connects to the wall through magnets, strong enough to hold a coat or two but the moment excessive weight is applied, it detaches. The hook itself is made from a flexible plastic, again rigid enough to fulfil its purpose but useless if used as a weapon.
It creates a sense of normality within a challenging environment. It shows trust and encourages the person to participate in regular activities, providing the person with an environment that is as normal as possible.
Don’t worry, Yewdale is under no illusion that a coat hook is the central part in a person’s recovery, but we understand that often the most unassuming items can be missed when they’re removed.
Take a look at our range of anti-ligature accessories suitable for en-suites here.