This week (17-23 May 2021) is Dementia Action Week organised by the Alzheimer's Society. We wanted to support this important campaign and also raise awareness about how music helps support those living with dementia and their carers.
Dementia is a debilitating disease that can dramatically alter the cognitive, emotional, and social aspects of a person's life. Worldwide, around 50 million people have dementia. That number is projected to rise to 152 million people by 2050. It is anticipated that there will be 1.14m people living with dementia in the UK by 2025, according to Alzheimer’s Research – up from around 885,000 today.
Additionally, 15% of older adults without Alzheimer's disease likely have mild cognitive impairment (MCI), between normal cognitive aging and Alzheimer's disease and up to 38% of these adults will go on to develop Alzheimer's within 5 years.
A new research study, published in the American Journal of Geriatrics, has shown that music provides a "significant effect on cognitive functioning for older adults with probable MCI (mild cognitive impairment) or dementia" and that "music showed promise to support quality of life and mood".
The UK charity, Music for Dementia, works with more than 200 charities and organisations and also speaks to the music industry and government to raise awareness and understanding of the role of music in dementia care. They also provide a number resources to help you bring music into the lives of people living with dementia.
If you or a family member are living with dementia and you feel music can help you here are some of our recommended resources:
Watch below to find out about our work with Age UK in Cheshire and using brass music to help overcome isolation and promote well-being for adult learners in partnership with Fodens Brass Band.
Read BBC Radio 6 Music’s article 6 things music can do for your mind
Read more about the Benefits of Music here.
Music is a powerful contributor to young people's wellbeing - youthmusic.org
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