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The effect of music on wellbeing - case studies

Author(s)

CONROY Jill, FAULKNER Sue

Publisher(s):

Hawker

This article reports on a small scale study of the impact of personalised music on residents living with dementia in a care home. Three care homes (Fremantle Trust's Lent Rise House, Lewin House and Meadowside care homes) and nine people living with dementia took part in the two week study. Care staff and activity organisers selected times of day (and night) to play music or a radio station with the resident. The researchers collaborated with Unforgettable (now part of Live Better with Dementia), a company allied to the non-profit organisation Music and Memory which donates iPods to people living in care homes to deliver the intervention. Findings:Qualitative statements from the care homes were invariably positive. Personalised music was found to reduce agitation and improve mood. None of the people living with dementia were able to initiate music themselves, so it required either staff or visitors to play it. Conclusion: the findings suggest that, when compiled in a person-centred way, music can be a source of comfort and calm. It can counter distressing events, alleviate anxiety, and increase sociability. The paper also includes some implications for practice or tips on how to provide personalised music in care homes. (Original abstract)


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