Community Blog

Music and the Art of Caregiving

By Denise Roskamp

Elderly Care in Wayland MA

You’re busy cleaning the kitchen, preparing some meals for your aging parent to have on hand, and sorting the laundry. In the background is the sound of various television shows as your loved one channel surfs the networks. It’s easy to use television as a distraction instead of entertainment. Your parent probably used it to keep you occupied while they were busy doing chores all those many years ago. Consider turning off the television and turning on the music. It’s good for both you and your parent.

Music

One type makes us happy, another brings on the blues. One draws are attention to the words, and another to the beat. Depending on the desired outcome, you’ll want to have a varied array of style and genres at your disposal. With the advent of You Tube and other online music options, a variety of music content is easily accessible.

Personalized Playlists

Music and Memory, an organization that trains care professionals how to set up and provide personal playlists for those they care for, has seen remarkable results in those with dementia and other chronic cognitive and physical impairments. A few of the benefits they’ve noted include reduced need for anti-psychotic medications. Of course, always check with your parent’s doctor before reducing any prescription medications. They’ve also noted changes in emotional behavior to include happier, calmer, more sociable and active participants. And for those suffering with dementia, music has been known to trigger long-forgotten memories.

Create a Personalized Playlist

When creating a personalized playlist, sit down with your loved one and determine their favorite music. It’s nice to vary the styles. Things to consider: who is their favorite performer, who did they listen to when they were young, what music played at their wedding? Spending some time together playing different styles, tempos and artists can be a fun activity as they cue you with a thumbs up or down for each piece.

Home Care Can Help

Once you and your senior loved one create a playlist or find a musical activity that they enjoy, a home care provider can help with this activity when you aren't able to be there. Providing companionship and assistance with the tasks of daily living are just some of the many benefits that home care providers have to offer.

Resources
www.musicandmemory.org

IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE ARE CONSIDERING ELDERLY CARE IN WAYLAND, MA, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT HOME HELPERS TODAY. CALL NOW (508) 545-0164.