Music and Dementia

Music soothes the savage beast. For my parents, it engages their minds and brings forth happy memories.

I stopped by to visit my parents and I couldn’t find them at their retirement community. When I went to ask if someone saw them get in a cab, I was told “No, they are at the OctoberFest celebration.”

They had forgotten I was going to come by for a visit and were sitting at a table watching the band play  traditional OctoberFest songs. Growing up, my parents didn’t listen to much music unless they were playing it together on a piano. I still can see my dad’s hand-written notes on the dashboard of both car’s restricting radio use if my mom was in the car.

Half-way through the concert, my mom starts clapping and is singing along with one of the tunes. She then starts to talk about when they lived in Germany. Music is reported to improved the memory of those with dementia. It was a pleasant way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

As I sat watching the band, I wondered what type of band would I be enjoying in my 80’s?  At 48, I still love electronic dance music and thanks to XM, it’s on in my car without fail. Humored.