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Alzheimer’s music program benefits those with dementia

February 18, 2021   ·   0 Comments

It is estimated that there are more than 10,000 people living with dementia in Simcoe County and more than 20,000 others who are affected either directly or indirectly by the disease.

Projections indicate that almost 21,000 people will be living with dementia in Simcoe County by 2036.

Music and art therapy has been proven to be a positive influence for people living with dementia.

The Alzheimer Society of Simcoe County (ASSC) is currently offering two programs that are music-based.

The Society has announced the addition of Creative Connections – a new program beginning March 2, in partnership with Quest Art School & Gallery.

The program will provide people with dementia the opportunity to explore their artistic talent using a variety of art forms including painting, crafting, and reflective journaling.

“Quest Art believes strongly in the power of art as a means of creating connections and we are very happy to be partnering with ASSC to provide this program, especially at a time when many people are dealing with isolation,” said Victoria Eichorn, Executive Director and curator at Quest Art. “Quest Art advocates for the many benefits that art provides for individuals spanning all ages and abilities. We recognize the significance of art as an important means to social engagement and connection, providing benefits that affect individuals mentally, emotionally, and physically.”

The Alzheimer Society programs include the Music Project which reconnects people with the soundtrack of their lives by providing music players loaded with personalized music to people living with dementia.

Listening to personalized music can be a powerful activity for those with dementia. It has the potential to increase physical and social activity and reignite old memories. It can also improve sleep, mood, cognition, communication, and a person’s overall quality of life.

The Musical Memories program provides online music sessions for people living with dementia and their care partners.

The program is offered in partnership with Music Therapy Services of Simcoe County. Participants receive a small percussive instrument to use while playing music with friends, family, and care partners.

“We are so happy to be partnering with the Alzheimer Society of Simcoe County to connect seniors in our community with music,” said Heidi Flynn, owner and director or MTSSC. “These on-line group sessions have offered participants the opportunity to express themselves, engage with others socially, and experience feelings of wellness.

All programs offered by the Alzheimer Society of Simcoe County are free of charge with wide range of services being offered to people living with dementia, their care partners, friends and families and the community at large.

It is estimated that in 15 years, nearly 1 million Canadians will be living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.

You can learn more by visiting the Alzheimer Society on-line at  www.alzheimersimcoecounty.ca

By Brian Lockhart
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter



         


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