Anti-ligature, what is it?

For a better understanding of the term “anti-ligature”, let’s drop the negative prefix, and then define the word itself. A ligature is an object that is tied or bound tightly to another. In other words, anti ligature hardware to the act of preventing such tying.

Anti-ligature products are designed to keep vulnerable people safe from harming themselves. Such products can be found in hospitals and mental health centers as well as prisons, young offender’s institutions, migrant centres, police station cell, etc. They include the luminaires as well the complete interior design.

It is possible to have a high ligature rate when there are ligature risks in the room. Ligature points can be any object that would allow a suicidal suicide attempter to use a cord, shoelace or another similar item as an anchor point. The most common points of attachment are door frames, hooks, handles, and window frames.

It is possible to distinguish between three different types of antiligature device: devices that release the load, those fixed against ligatures and other solutions which can be classified into weapon deterrents.

Anti-ligatures with load-release are designed to come loose or release themselves from their fixed point under excess tension. It may have two parts or more, but one will give under extreme weight and strain. Hanging becomes impossible.

They are physically stronger, and their design prevents them from serving as a strong hanging point. Most of them have curved edges with entry points that are difficult to pick apart, even using homemade tools.

Weapon deterrents have parts and components that cannot be removed or broken by anyone to become a weapon.

It is possible to save lives by using lighting

It is estimated that the suicide rate at psychiatric and prison hospitals are more than three times as high as in other areas. In prisons and mental hospitals, hanging suicide is the most prevalent method. It’s the second method chosen and the UK’s most common cause of suicide – 59% for men and 45% for women. Each year, 800,000 people worldwide commit suicide – that’s about one death every 40 second. Anti-ligature-classified products are one of the ways to prevent suicides in buildings where they are mounted.

For anti-ligature illumination to be safe in such types of environments while preventing self-harm, it must fulfill a certain set of requirements. The luminaire must have smooth, curving surfaces. They must have an IK10 rating for mechanical impact resistance so they can handle a direct 20-joule impact. You must ensure that the luminaires are securely fastened to the ceiling or walls, with no holes or sharp edges. A robust design will also prevent the luminaires from being ripped down or pried open. Anti-pick mastic, concrete silicone and anti-pick adhesive should always cover the surface of the luminaires that face the wall.

The anti-ligature light is built to give its users the visual comfort they need. The appropriate changes in light color can be used to create an atmosphere of relaxation, which can prevent or reduce increased anxiety. This can allow individuals to feel more comfortable and relaxed while being treated at mental healthcare facilities. BBL (Blue Blocking Light), and daylight focal areas can improve people’s circadian clock and sleeping patterns. It is particularly helpful for their mental health. Light therapy can be used to reduce the symptoms of manic depressive patients.

When a vulnerable individual is present, it’s important to have a minimal set of dimming levels. Presence detection and minimum settings can also be utilized. Maintenance alerts and energy-saving solutions ensure that the lighting scheme is reliable and efficient.

Customized lighting for facility that requires anti-ligature product can include luminaires using circular optics. These solutions may be recessed or ceiling mounted. Smart lighting control can provide the right light levels, color temperatures at all times of the day.