Dementia Study says music therapy works
A dementia study finds music therapy to be highly beneficial, reducing symptoms by 5% in those affected.
The report finds that symptoms plaguing hundreds of thousands of people suffering from dementia could be significantly improved by listening to and playing music.
The study, which is comprised of existing evidence as well as opinions from leading experts, found that music helps those with dementia recall information as well as reducing symptoms like aggression, agitation and anxiety.
For such a simple ‘remedy’, there is a serious lack of funding and education surrounding music therapy in dementia, with only 5% of care homes in the UK using it effectively.
The study said: “There is emerging evidence to suggest that music may help to delay the onset of dementia and improve brain function and information recall.”
Music is the best remedy
The study is carried out by a commission formed by the International Longevity Centre think tank in conjunction with the Utley Foundation and will be presented to MPs and peers in the House of Lords on Thursday.
The commission calls for music therapy to be promoted by the NHS through personal health budgets as well as integrated personal budgets.
They also call for an ambassador for dementia and music along with a campaign spreading information about the benefits of music for dementia.
Dr Laura Phipps, of Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “NHS (National Health Service) guidelines suggest music therapy as a possible way to help people with dementia deal with complex behavioural symptoms. As more studies start to explore the benefits of music in dementia, this report highlights the importance of developing robust and practical approaches to explore the benefits and cost-effectiveness of music interventions, which are often delivered in very diverse and tailored ways.
Hopefully the dementia study can shed light on the benefits of music therapy and get the funding they need in order to help all those affected.