A SOUTHAMPTON university has created an "innovative" and "calming" new x-ray room for patients with dementia.

Developed by staff at University Hospital Southampton the room features woodland imagery, blue sky tiles and music tailored to each visitor.

The space is the brainchild of Andrea Boycott, a superintendent radiographer for the emergency department and theatres, supported by her colleague Ines Roca.

Together with specialist dementia nurses, they identified how to provide "calm" surroundings for patients with dementia, learning disabilities and confusion.

This resulted in the use of bright colours to help patients focus.

Ceiling tiles with clouds, a rainbow and blue sky were selected alongside a picturesque woodland mural to make room appear less clinical and help reduce anxiety.

The team also keep a store of knitted fabric tubes known as "twiddle muffs’" to help keep dementia patients’ hands warm and active during imaging and allow them to select their music before their x-rays.

Acting superintendent radiographer at the hospital, Ines Roca said: “Before our development, it was very difficult to find any literature on similar projects, so we enlisted the help of the dementia specialist dementia nurses in Southampton to develop the concept with us.

“This new environment immediately helped us to calm patients with dementia, as well as those with learning disabilities and acute confusion, and has ultimately enabled us to provide a much better standard of care to these patients.”

She added: “Feedback from patients has been overwhelmingly positive and we have since made information available to organisations across the NHS on creating similar dementia-friendly rooms, so we are pleased to have played a part in starting such a beneficial trend.”

The university has recently received £1.7 million to launch a new trial into helping women who suffer from acne.

Doctors at the University of Southampton are looking to recruit women in Hampshire to take part in the study, which will investigate whether this treatment can improve their acne.

The study is being funded by the National Institute for Health Research.

Many adults live with acne and are often treated with antibiotics, however rising rates of antibiotic resistance means different treatments are needed.