MUSIC AND MEMORY
High View Rehabilitation and Nursing Center
is proud to be a certified facility of the
MUSIC & MEMORY® is a non-profit organization that brings personalized music into the lives of the elderly or infirm through digital music technology, vastly improving quality of life.
Our nursing home staff and other elder care professionals, as well as family caregivers, are trained on how to create and provide personalized playlists using audio systems that enable those struggling with Alzheimer’s, dementia and other cognitive and physical challenges to reconnect with the world through music-triggered memories.
By providing access and education, and by being a part of the network of MUSIC & MEMORY® Certified organizations, High View Rehabilitation and Nursing Center strives to make this form of personalized therapeutic music a standard of care throughout the facility and with each resident.
The Music and Memory program can help loved ones reconnect with cherished memories and provide hope. This program not only brings excitement and joy to residents, but allows families to recapture a hint of the personalities they love and know so well.
“Music is such an effective tool for therapy because it is an incredibly complex phenomenon.
– Tania De Jong
The past which is not recoverable in any other way is embedded, as if in amber, in the music, and people can regain a sense of identity. . .
— Oliver Sacks
Music and the Brain
Oliver Sacks on Music, Memory and Emotion
Oliver Sacks, M.D., noted neurologist and best-selling author of Musicophilia, discusses the impact of personalized music on people suffering from Alzheimer’s and severe memory loss.
Oliver Sacks - Musicophilia - Alzheimer's / The Power of Music
EDUCATION & LINKS FROM MUSIC & MEMORY®
Meet Henry, who struggled with dementia for a decade and barely said a word to anyone—until Music & Memory set up an iPod program at his nursing home.
Help Spread the Music and Give New Life to Someone You Love
Millions of aging Americans living in long-term care facilities face cognitive and physical difficulties and have left behind their familiar surroundings, familiar faces, and even their favorite music. Despite the best efforts of loved ones, their lives often lack meaning, spontaneity, choice, and reliable social interaction.
But there’s reason to hope for a better life as we age. At MUSIC & MEMORY®, we help people in nursing homes and other care organizations who struggle with a wide range of cognitive and physical challenges to find renewed meaning and connection in their lives through the gift of personalized music.
Beloved Music Can Renew Lives Lost to Dementia
Our approach is simple, elegant and effective: We train care professionals how to set up personalized music playlists, delivered on iPods and other digital devices, for those in their care. These musical favorites tap deep memories not lost to dementia and can bring participants back to life, enabling them to feel like themselves again, to converse, socialize and stay present.
Music & Memory’s work is rooted in extensive neuroscience research. The results can be nothing short of miraculous.
The Therapeutic Benefits of Personalized Music
Henry’s remarkable re-awakening is not unique. In thousands of MUSIC & MEMORY® Certified Care Organizations throughout the U.S. and Canada, we’re helping many individuals struggling from dementia and other chronic cognitive and physical impairments reconnect with family, friends and caregivers through our personalized digital music program.
Our ongoing research and evaluation of Music & Memory’s work in care organizations shows consistent results:
Participants are happier and more social.
Relationships among staff, participants and family deepen.
Everyone benefits from a calmer, more supportive social environment.
Staff regain valuable time previously lost to behavior management issues.
There is growing evidence that a personalized music program gives professionals one more tool in their effort to reduce reliance on anti-psychotic medications.
Music Activates Regions of the Brain Spared by Alzheimer’s Disease
Ever get chills listening to a particularly moving piece of music? You can thank the salience network of the brain for that emotional joint. Surprisingly, this region also remains an island of remembrance that is spared from the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers at the University of Utah Health are looking to this region of the brain to develop music-based treatments to help alleviate anxiety in patients with dementia. Their research will appear in the April online issue of The Journal of Prevention of Alzheimer's Disease.
People with dementia are confronted by a world that is unfamiliar to them, which causes disorientation and anxiety,” said Jeff Anderson, MD, PhD, associate professor in Radiology at U of U Health and contributing author on the study. “We believe music will tap into the salience network of the brain that is still relatively functioning.”
Previous work demonstrated the effect of a personalized music program on mood for dementia patients. This study set out to examine a mechanism that activates the attention-al network in the salience region of the brain. The results offer a new way to approach anxiety, depression and agitation in patients with dementia. Activation of neighboring regions of the brain may also offer opportunities to delay the continued decline caused by the disease.
For three weeks, the researchers helped participants select meaningful songs and trained the patient and caregiver on how to use a portable media player loaded with the self-selected collection of music.
“When you put headphones on dementia patients and play familiar music, they come alive,” said Jace King, a graduate student in the Brain Network Lab and first author on the paper. “Music is like an anchor, grounding the patient back in reality.”
Using a functional MRI, the researchers scanned the patients to image the regions of the brain that lit up when they listened to 20-second clips of music versus silence. The researchers played eight clips of music from the patient’s music collection, eight clips of the same music played in reverse and eight blocks of silence. The researchers compared the images from each scan.
The researchers found that music activates the brain, causing whole regions to communicate. By listening to the personal soundtrack, the visual network, the salience network, the executive network and the cerebellar and corticocerebellar network pairs all showed significantly higher functional connectivity.
“This is objective evidence from brain imaging that shows personally meaningful music is an alternative route for communicating with patients who have Alzheimer’s disease,” said Norman Foster, MD, Director of the Center for Alzheimer's Care and Imaging Research at U of U Health and senior author on the paper. “Language and visual memory pathways are damaged early as the disease progresses, but personalized music programs can activate the brain, especially for patients who are losing contact with their environment.”
However, these results are by no means conclusive. The researchers note the small sample size (17 participants) for this study. In addition, the study only included a single imaging session for each patient. It is remains unclear whether the effects identified in this study persist beyond a brief period of stimulation or whether other areas of memory or mood are enhanced by changes in neural activation and connectivity for the long term.
“In our society, the diagnoses of dementia are snowballing and are taxing resources to the max,” Anderson said. “No one says playing music will be a cure for Alzheimer’s disease, but it might make the symptoms more manageable, decrease the cost of care and improve a patient’s quality of life.”
K.G. Jones, M. Rollins, K. Macnamee, C. Moffit, S.R. Naidu, E. Garcia-Leavitt, R.K. Gurgel, J. Amaro and K.R. Breitenbach at U of U Health and University of Utah, E. Goldberg from the Jewish Family Services of Utah, J.M. Watson from University of Colorado and M.A. Ferguson from Massachusetts General Hospital also contributed to this project. This work received support from A. Scott Anderson and the American Otological Society. SOURCE: https://musicandmemory.org/music-brain-resources/current-research/
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In this article that appeared in Psychology Today (12-11-13), columnist Christopher Bergland explains recent research about “music-evoked autobiographical memories” (MEAMs), and why music evokes such strong responses from people with Alzheimer’s Disease.