Music is powerful.
It has the power to transport you back in time. You hear a song and suddenly you’re sitting in front of a crackling fire with your parents on Christmas Eve, or maybe you’re back in your white dress, with your new partner’s arms wrapped around your waist as you dance your first dance.
Again, music is powerful.
Music therapists use music to address the specific needs of their clients and to support development, health and well-being, both emotionally and physically.
Music as pain treatment
Music therapy is also known to significantly decrease chronic pain. According to a paper by Sandra L. Siedlecki in the Journal of Advanced Nursing, listening to music can reduce chronic pain by up to 21 per cent and depression by up to 25 per cent.
The brain can only process so much information. Introducing something like music while experiencing pain can block out the pain by taking up some of those pathways.
This is aided by the fact that music is processed in every area of the brain.
It diverts the attention away from the pain stimulus into an experience that’s more enjoyable.
Lost memories found
In Canada, an estimated 45 per cent of people in long-term residential care facilities are suffering from dementia, according to StatsCanada.
Music therapy can even allow individuals with neurodegenerative disorders to connect to certain memories.
Music is an organized pattern, so as your brain takes it in, your thoughts become more organized as well. It’s for this reason patients often seem more lucid after a session. The effects will fade, but it provides an individual and their loved-ones some very rare and valuable time together.
A team effort
Music therapy is most powerful when it works collaboratively with other forms of therapy like speech and physiotherapy. It’s proven especially beneficial with patients recovering from strokes, who are working to regain both speech and physical ability.
When you team up different types of therapists, you can really accelerate and deepen the responses from people. Music therapy, along with other therapeutic programs such as pet therapy and art therapy, have proven to be beneficial to seniors in the long-run.
At Peace Portal Seniors Village, music is used regularly as part of their programs and for live entertainment. Contact the team from Peace Portal Seniors Village at 604-535-2273 to learn more about the programs they offer. Or visit online at retirementconcepts.com/locations/peace-portal-seniors-village for more information.