iPod Therapy Opens Memories for Alzheimer’s Patients

Music works, music heals; it unlocks our emotions, creativity, spirituality, and the infinite potential of the brain.  It is also a way to tap into the memories of someone suffering with Alzheimer’s Disease according to Dr. Concetta Tomaino, who has studied the therapeutic effects of music for more than 30 years.

Caregivers have observed for decades that Alzheimer’s patients can still remember and sing songs long after they’ve stopped recognizing names and faces. Many hospitals and nursing homes use music as recreation, since it brings patients pleasure. But beyond the entertainment value, there’s growing evidence that listening to music can also help stimulate seemingly lost memories and even help restore some cognitive function.

“What I believe is happening is that by engaging very basic mechanisms of emotions and listening, music is stimulating dormant areas of the brain that haven’t been accessible due to degenerative disease,” says Concetta Tomaino, executive director of the Institute for Music and Neurologic Function, a nonprofit organization founded at Beth Abraham in 1995. 1

Read the complete article by Melinda Beck in The Wall Street Journal.

1Retrieved November, 26, 2009 The Wall Street Journal “A Key for Unlocking Memories” http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704538404574540163096944766.html

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