Singing restores Harmony to the Brain; Dementia

Singing also improves mood

Singing has been found to boost the brain function and mood of people with early stage dementia as published in a study in the Journal of Alzheimer’s disease. Finnish researchers report.

What is Dementia?
Dementia refers to a decline in mental ability. A chronic or persistent disorder of the mental processes caused by brain disease or injury and marked by memory disorders, personality changes, and impaired reasoning. It can be severe enough to interfere with daily life.
“Stimulating and engaging activities, such as singing, seem to be very promising for maintaining memory functioning in the early stages of dementia.”

About the Study
The study was done involving 89 persons with dementia conditions, ranging from mild to moderate cases. Some were coached in singing; others listened to familiar songs, or received standard care from their caregivers for a 10 week period.

Study Report
Result showed that those in the singing group showed significant improvements in memory, thinking skills and the ability to navigate their way around. The study found out that this improvement was evident in those younger than 80 with mild dementia. According to the finding, singing and listening to music helped to reduce depression in those with mild Alzheimer’s disease and in patients generally.
The study leader Teppo Sarkamo, of the University of Helsinki said “Given the increasing global prevalence and burden of dementia and the limited resources in public health care for persons with dementia and their family caregivers, it is important to find alternative ways to maintain and stimulate cognitive, emotional, and social well-being in this population.”
According to the researchers “musical leisure activities could be easily applied and widely used in dementia care and rehabilitation.” 

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