This October, Playlist for Life, a UK charity that encourages the use of personal music for people living with dementia, has announced that it will support and develop Dementia UK’s Admiral Nurses existing knowledge around the therapeutic use of music in dementia care. This project is announced off the back of World Alzheimer’s Month, which took place in September.
This connection between the award-winning music and dementia charity and Dementia UK looks to complement the vital support delivered by Admiral Nurses to people living with dementia and their families in the community and in healthcare settings. As a result, more Admiral Nurses will be able to support families to access this effective intervention.
Playlist for Life’s training is based on more than two decades of research showing that ‘personal music’ – the specific tunes attached to someone’s emotions that can spark memories – can help those living with dementia by alleviating stress, managing symptoms and strengthening relationships with family members and carers.
Made up by familiar songs from a patient’s childhood through to their wedding day and beyond, the personal playlists have been known to improve the lives of those they are curated for, as well as giving families and carers a tool to help connect with those they support. In addition, the health benefits for those using their personalised playlists are undeniable, with one care home in Glasgow reporting a 60% reduction in the use of medication for treating anxiety in people living with dementia.
Dementia UK is the specialist dementia nurse charity. Dementia UK’s Admiral Nurses provide life-changing support for families affected by all forms of dementia.
As dementia specialists, Admiral Nurses help families manage complex needs – considering the person living with dementia and the people around them – and they can advise other healthcare professionals too.
Michelle Armstrong-Surgenor, Executive Director at Playlist for Life, said: “We are thrilled to work with Dementia UK to increase understanding of how to use personally meaningful music as part of essential and life-changing support to families affected by dementia.
“Music that is meaningful to a person living with dementia can be a lifeline, helping families, carers and healthcare professionals to connect through the soundtrack of a person’s life. These personal playlists benefit both the person living with dementia and the one caring for them by strengthening relationships, easing distress, and promoting person-centred care. We have trained over 7,000 health and social care professionals on the power of playlists and look forward to working with Dementia UK’s Admiral Nurses to further support those living with dementia and raise awareness of the therapeutic use of music more broadly.”
Caroline Scates, Head of Professional and Practice Development at Dementia UK said: “Music is increasingly being used to help people living with dementia connect to past experiences and tap into powerful emotions. It is fantastic to highlight the wider benefits of the therapeutic use of music in dementia by sharing Playlist for Life materials with Admiral Nurses.”
Playlist for Life also works with over 1000 community Help Points around the UK, where people living with dementia, their loved ones and carers can access free advice and materials on how to build personal playlists and use them effectively.
For more information on the training courses or to hear more about Playlist for Life, please visit: www.playlistforlife.org.uk. Additional details can also be found on Playlist for Life’s dedicated training site: training.playlistforlife.org.uk