HEALTH: Exploring the benefits of MUSIC THERAPY for older adults

“Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.”

― Plato, Philosopher

 Music is a safe, inexpensive strategy to support health and well-being. Given the deep connection that most of us have with music, it should be no surprise that researchers worldwide continue to investigate music’s therapeutic benefits. Whether for yourself or a loved one, consider incorporating more music into your everyday life and enjoy its benefits.

 Music can help ease your hospital stay
If you’re undergoing surgery or other hospital treatments, you’re probably not thinking of boogying to the beat. But research shows that music therapy can reduce anxiety and pain and help ease depression and fatigue.

Music can improve walking speed
Walking speed and “gait” (the pattern and manner of walking) are important indicators to gauge your overall health. Whether you realize it or not, you may be training yourself for a longer, healthier, and more active lifestyle by listening to music while you walk.

Music may improve cognitive functioning
Research has shown that active music-making therapy may improve cognitive functioning by a small but important amount in older adults with cognitive impairment or mild to moderate dementia. Seek out music-based programming delivered by a professional, emphasizing activities that actively engage participants in music-making.  

Music can improve overall behavioural issues in people with dementia
Studies have shown that listening to music allows older adults with dementia to be calmer, which indirectly helps reduce caregivers’ stress levels. Also, group music therapy sessions led by a trained music therapist helped reduce caregivers’ anxiety by allowing them to express and share their feelings.

Whether for yourself or a loved one, consider incorporating more music into your everyday life and enjoy

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