April 26 2019
Assisted living is often concerned with the more pragmatic concerns of day-to-day life, such as the dining and transportation services that we can offer. However, beyond looking after the physical comforts elderly housing, there are less tangible concerns that can be more important. Happiness, engagement and a general sense of safety and well-being are critical emotional components of elderly housing too, and music can play an important role in this.
Music Goes Straight To Heart
Few things can affect a person’s emotions as quickly and directly as music. Music imprints itself on a person’s emotions and memories in a powerful, permanent way, conjuring up reminiscence the feelings associated with it from just a few opening notes. Because of this, music therapy can be a very easy, but important component of maintaining satisfaction and engagement in elderly housing. There are several reasons for this.
Music is a passive activity and doesn’t make any demands of a senior. Even with some hearing difficulty, music can still be viable for some through the use of headphones so that the volume can be raised, and bass or treble can be adjusted as needed for the individual’s specific hearing needs. It’s not a demanding physical activity and can be a great way to combat boredom and not leave a senior alone with his or her thoughts, in solitude.
For people with anxiety or nervous dispositions, music can be very soothing. The right song can rekindle positive, happy associations that can brighten the mood. In a different context, playing soothing, calming music can slow things down and help to defuse an angry or excitable situation.
While people in elderly housing may not necessarily be encouraged to engage in heavy physical activity, smaller movements should still be encouraged, and music can do this. The tapping of feet, moving hands in time to a song can all have positive therapeutic effects.