Aegis Living sent more than 700 senior citizens from 14 Washington communities to the Lynnwood Convention Center to celebrate Brazilian Carnival on May 4. The residents had been busy for weeks making masks and costumes, building excitement for the event. Day of, they enjoyed a live Brazilian band and a Brazilian-style lunch.
“A lot of times with seniors, people think they can’t do things like this anymore because they’re frail or maybe they even have a cognitive impairment,” Aegis Living CEO and founder Dwayne Clark said in a statement. “Music penetrates the crevasses of the brain and gets beyond the cognitive impairments a lot of people have.”
Science supports the idea that memory care should involve music. In 2014, an article in the British Journal of Occupational Therapy asserted live music has a positive impact on the behavior of people with Alzheimer’s disease. Other studies have determined group music therapy can help reduce depression and anxiety in seniors with cognitive impairments, according to the journal Dementia and Neurocognitive Disorders.
Indeed, the benefits of music are well known. The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America says music therapy can have a positive impact on the lives of people with Alzheimer’s through the very latest stages of the disease.
Music therapy is an important part of memory care, but it doesn’t have to be a serious, joyless process. Instead, Aegis Living creates an environment for musical activity that involves fun, sociability and even new types of entertainment from around the world.