Care Network Link

Music can help engage those with dementia

Music can be very therapeutic for those with Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia.  It can trigger memories and access parts of their brain that recognize and react to familiar music.  It can also help increase appetite and physical activity and reduce irritability.  It is important to select the music that is significant to the individual.  Try to pick music from their youth or favorite songs over the years.  This can also be a fun project to get younger family members engaged in helping.  Encouraging them to set up old iPods  and researching the music that would be appreciated by a grandparent can be a great way to involve them.  It is important to stress that the music needs to be significant to the individual with dementia.  Try it out and see how it goes!  You'll be able to tell pretty quickly how your loved one reacts.  Encourage them to sing along as best they can.  Smile and dance with them and show them that you want to share the fun with them.