Using Music to Help Older Adults with Dementia

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Playing Music for a Senior with Dementia in Richmond, VA

Music is both an art and a unique tool caregivers can use to enrich the lives of senior loved ones diagnosed with dementia. Numerous studies have shown music can boost the mood, behavior, and health of seniors with dementia and can even increase their cognitive function. Music therapy can relieve caregiver stress as well. If your aging loved one is living with dementia, you can use the following tips to take advantage of music’s multiple benefits. 

Choose Music Associated with Happy Memories 

If possible, engage in a conversation with your loved one about music he or she identifies with happy times and pleasant memories, such as music played at a high school prom or a wedding reception. Ask about favorite musical productions and movies. Use simply phrased questions such as “Who’s your favorite singer?” Avoid choosing any music associated with unpleasant moments, even if the tunes themselves are upbeat. For seniors in the later stages of dementia, you can try playing different songs that were popular during their younger years and watch for positive reactions. Family and friends can be good sources for suggestions as well. 

If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior care families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

Pick the Right Medium in the Right Setting 

Your loved one may love Broadway show tunes but be overwhelmed by a night at the theater. Introduce music in a setting in which your loved one will be comfortable. Playing a CD of favorite songs is often a better choice than turning on the radio. Some seniors with dementia find radio commercials and announcers irritating or confusing. For a real treat, bring out an old phonograph that plays vinyl records and invite other family members to participate in an evening of music. Shared musical experiences offer opportunities to strengthen bonds. 

Certain age-related conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to age in place safely and comfortably, but Richmond live-in care experts are available around the clock to help seniors manage their health. Whether your loved one is living with dementia or recovering from a stroke, you can trust the professional live-in caregivers from Home Care Assistance to enhance his or her quality of life. 

Combine Music with Physical Activities

Combining music with physical activities like walking or dancing can help your loved one remain physically fit. Be careful not to overdo it, though, and watch for signs of sensory overload. Keep an assortment of musical selections on hand so you can vary the tempo according to your loved one’s mood. 

Seniors with dementia have complex needs, and there are a variety of ways to boost their health. If your senior loved one needs help managing an illness or assistance with daily tasks, make sure you choose a top-rated provider of homecare services. Richmond Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life in the golden years. From the mentally stimulating activities in our Cognitive Therapeutics Method to our friendly Care Managers who are available to answer your questions 24 hours a day, we offer a wide array of high-quality at-home care services. To create a comprehensive in-home care plan for your parent, give us a call at (804) 207-4746 today. 


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