Although music is typically thought of as simply a form of entertainment, it may also have certain health benefits, which is why listening to music throughout the day can inadvertently boost your elderly loved one’s health. Read on to learn how listening to music is good for seniors.
1. Delays Dementia Symptoms
There’s strong evidence that listening to music may keep dementia at bay or slow its progress. While scientists don’t yet know why, some research shows listening to favorite songs from the past brings back memories of youth, which may reduce memory loss. Singing along with music may also be good for a senior’s brain, providing a cognitive workout when he or she is trying to recall lyrics. Listening to music can help your loved one preserve important memories and process his or her thoughts more easily. A 2000 study found seniors with dementia, including those who were no longer able to communicate, responded positively when songs that were a part of their earlier lives were played.
2. Soothes Anxiety
If your loved one frequently experiences agitation as a result of issues such as health conditions, financial problems, medical treatments, or family disagreements, music can be calming and help him or her settle down. For seniors who enjoy classical music, instrumental songs can be especially relaxing. If your loved one has dementia, playing classical music can help him or her settle down when he or she feels overwhelmed.
In addition to listening to music to ease anxiety, there are many other things your loved one can do to remain healthy. Senior care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.
3. Promotes Conversation
When day-to-day routines become monotonous, conversations can also become dull. Many family caregivers report falling into the habit of limiting their everyday discussions to daily activities and checking in on how their loved ones are feeling. Listening to music together can revive these conversations, providing a way to share musical preferences as well as memories associated with favorite songs.
A study conducted by researchers at Willamette University in 2000 found music therapy is effective in slowing down the loss of communication skills that can occur in the elderly. Additionally, seniors with Alzheimer’s who have lost the ability to communicate can often still hum or sing songs from their past when music is played.Alzheimer’s can be challenging for seniors to manage without assistance, and it can be just as challenging for families who don’t have experience in providing Alzheimer’s care. Denver Home Care Assistance provides Alzheimer’s care seniors and their families can depend on. Our proprietary Cognitive Therapeutics Method was designed to help seniors with Alzheimer’s and other memory-related conditions live happier and healthier lives.
4. Encourages Engagement
Some senior music lovers feel happier and more animated while listening to music. This is particularly true when listening to favorite tunes from their youth that remind them of specific memories or how it felt to be young and carefree. In a similar way, because hymns, gospel music, and other religious songs are often associated with positive feelings, listening to them may also be an effective way to boost seniors’ moods.
5. Helps Seniors Eat More
If your loved one doesn’t eat much or experiences agitation during meals, try playing relaxing music at a low volume during mealtimes. The music may reduce your loved one’s stress or anxiety so he or she can be relaxed enough to concentrate on eating and enjoying the meal.
Listening to music is just one of the many ways older adults can boost their wellbeing. Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional at-home care. Denver, CO, Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life. To schedule a free in-home consultation, give us a call at (720) 443-3371 today.