Music therapy program
Music therapy is an important part of our day at SarahCare. Participants facing memory challenges, dementia and Alzheimer’s respond well, showing discernable improvement in their cognitive skills.
Our music therapy program is conducted by Senior New Ways, a non-profit organization. They refer to their methods as “Memory Tune-ing Therapy”. It includes an array of activities including "guided listening", which involves listening to carefully selected music tracks to which seniors have shown positive emotional reaction.
Music therapy also involves singing and clapping along to music, dancing for those able and willing, and reminiscing about the feelings and memories the music evokes.
In addition, we have a karaoke machine which our participants have a lot of fun with under the guidance of our staff.
Along with our music therapy programs, we also play background music at appropriate times throughout the day. The genres include big band and swing music, light jazz, country-western, classical and pop music from every era.
For the benefit of retiring baby boomers, we are now mixing in the best songs from the 1960s through mid-1970s as well, including great artists such as The Beatles, Neil Diamond, The Beach Boys, Fleetwood Mac and The Eagles.
We change formats frequently, so your loved one is sure to hear music they like throughout the day.
If someone wants to hear a particular genre or artist, we can even set them up with headphones and a music player filled with the music of their choice.
According to neurologists, music has a unique ability to awaken the emotional side of the brain which can stir memories and associations in seniors. This stimulation can improve their ability to process information, reason and communicate.
Benefits of music therapy
- Triggers positive memories and emotions through association
- Engages participants as a group
- Creates a fun social environment
- Promotes physical activities like dancing, foot tapping and clapping
- Relieves stress and anxiety
- Reduces pain by releasing endorphins
Studies show that music therapy is beneficial not only for dementia patients; it is helpful to all seniors. Seniors often experience a decline in activity and social contact, causing them to withdraw and become more isolated. Music therapy helps reawaken them emotionally, drawing them out and helping to renew their zest for life.
Hundreds of families from the Greater San Jose Area have benefited from our music therapy program.
Do you have a loved one with memory or cognitive challenges? Bring them to SarahCare for some music therapy. This is one of many programs we offer to stimulate our participants’ minds, bodies and spirits.