Using Music Therapy for Those Living with Alzheimer's
Last updated: February 2023
I think we can all agree that music is something everyone can enjoy! It can be an effective tool in connecting with others, but what about those who suffer from Alzheimer's?
Hi! My name is Nikki and I've been a dementia caregiver for over 10 years now. Recently, I have found that the best way to communicate with my mother as Alzheimer's disease progresses is through music. In this video, I am going to explain how you can use music as an effective therapeutic way of communicating with someone who has Alzheimer's disease.
Here are some ways you might incorporate music for three specific times of the day if you're caring for someone with Alzheimer's disease...
Using music therapy in the mornings
Soft instrumental music or nature-soundscapes can be very calming for those with dementia. It's important, however, to find the right kind of song that your loved one will enjoy - as some may not respond well or feel too anxious listening to certain types!
To make sure you're finding songs they'll love (and won't agitate them) try asking about their favorite artists and musical genres before getting started on your search.
In the afternoon when mom is bored
In the afternoons, keeping your loved one's spirits up can be a challenge. Lively music will not only make them feel more engaged but also help you out because it provides an atmosphere of fun and happiness! Playing lively and familiar music allows people struggling with memory loss to feel safe and comfortable; so feel free to engage and sing along! Singing together is great for keeping our minds active while also staying connected with our loved ones.
In the evening when mom is agitated
Music reduces stress and anxiety in those with dementia, so it's important that we provide them with calming environments during their evening hours. Playing an easy tune or even showing them some guided meditations can create a more relaxing atmosphere for you both at the same time!
The evenings are a time for peace and relaxation in the home, so it's important to create environments that will help your loved one wind down.
Using music therapy with Alzheimer's
Music is a universal language; it transcends all of the barriers that can come with communicating about health care needs, personal relationships, and even emotional trauma. I hope this video has shown you how music therapy can be used to keep your loved one with dementia engaged during any part of their day for better quality interactions.
If you are looking for more information on utilizing music therapy in Alzheimer's communication or another form of dementia, let us know! We would love to work with you in understanding what kind of support they need.
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