Research and anecdotal evidence indicate that knowledgeable use of music can improve quality of life for persons living with dementia (PLWD). However, it appears that best music practices for PLWD are not being fully/consistently realized and are generally not well understood. This philosophical inquiry integrates multiple forms of evidence, theoretical concepts, and practical rationale to demonstrate the need for a coordinated, interprofessional, sustainable, best practices model for the use of music in dementia care.
Clarify why music is important for persons who are living with dementia.
Identify assumptions/misperceptions about the use of music in dementia care.
Present rationale underlying the need for a sustainable best music practices model in dementia care.
Some of the work presented in this paper received support from:
The CSSS Cavendish (CIUSSS) Innovative Practice Development Fund & The Raschkowan Creative Arts Therapies Research Award
Dr. Laurel Young (MTA) is an Associate Professor of Music Therapy and researcher at Concordia University (Montreal, CANADA). She has over 24 years of diverse clinical and advocacy experience, has presented internationally, and has authored several book chapters and peer reviewed journal publications. Current research areas include: the use of music/music therapy in dementia and palliative care, the use of singing to promote health and well being, and the Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music.