Senior Project Paper: Music Therapy used on Alzheimer's Patients

Topics: Alzheimer's disease, Dementia, Memory Pages: 13 (2836 words) Published: December 4, 2014
Courtney Everette
Ms. Askue
August 26, 2014
English IV
Music Therapy
Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve observed people playing music around me. My family is musically inclined, which I believe is the reason I’ve been drawn to it. In 2006, I began taking guitar lessons but I never had much interest in playing. Things changed in 2009, and I wished to be different. I wanted to be good at something so I began to teach myself guitar and have stuck with the guitar until now. In 2010, I began to play on my church’s worship team and I enjoyed it very much. I have now been a worship leader for the past four years and it’s something I love to do. I love it so much that for the past two years I have gone to Camp Electric to improve my skills. Camp Electric is a rock and roll music camp where musicians pick an instrument and they participate in workshops with that instrument. This camp is filled with people who love music and who love playing music. I have such a passion for playing that I have begun teaching guitar lessons and now I am expressing music with my patients in order to achieve a goal. I love to share music with people and I feel that different genres have different therapeutic benefits that can differ from person to person. Listening to music has its benefits but so does playing music, and I use music as a stress reliever on a daily basis. I have experienced the healing benefits that music provides and I wish to share those with other people. I have always been interested in why people behave the way they do; whether this behavior is from what has happened to them or what they have been through can be fixed. I love music, but I wanted to take a different perspective to it by focusing on music therapy for my senior project.

If one were to search for music therapy on Google there is not a lack of information, stories of transformations line the web. People have always been curious about music, something so simple but so life-changing. Millions of studies have been conducted throughout the years, to research why music works and who it works on. I will be using scholarly journals and articles to help me research my topic. Along with research, I will be taking the results from my experiment to add to my credibility on the subject. My mentor, Davina Schmidt, has also worked with Alzheimer patients for five years now and she is able to advise me on normal behavior for patients. I plan to integrate a product that really defines the project. For my product I will make a video that will be included into my presentation. This video will include myself working with the patients whom should be able to have some recollection of partial memories with the approach I’m taking. I will be taking music from when the patient was 18-25 years old and playing music from each year, hoping to get a memory from every year. Once I have gotten them through those years I will then go decade by decade to get more memories the individual may have hidden. The second part of my product is going to be a test result that will be included in my paper and also in my portfolio. The test results will show improvement through better sleep and stress reduction. Research:

A catastrophic day might interfere with one’s plans, it might make them feel rushed or under pressure. They would come home after long hours of mental torture and reach for the cereal box only to put it back in the cup cabinet. One might struggle daily with remembering peoples’ names and may not even remember what they had for breakfast yesterday. After not having much sleep someone may snap at their friend for something they did last week, and they had already talked it over. This forgetfulness and confusion is something that an individual with Alzheimer’s goes through day-to-day. The side effects from each stage of Alzheimer’s only gets worse over time and they begin to take over the lives of innocent individuals. In fact, Alzheimer’s is the sixth leading cause...

Cited: "2014 Alzheimer 's Disease Facts and Figures.” Alzheimer’s Association. Alzheimer’s & Dementia 10.2. 2014. Web. 18 Aug. 2014.
“Behavioral Complications.” Alzheimer’s Association. 2014. Web. 21 Aug 2014.
“The Discovery of Alzheimer’s Disease.” Hippius, Hanns. National Center for Biotechnology Information 5.1. 22 Mar. 2003. page 101-108. Web. 19 Aug. 2014.
Hanscom, K.L. (2001). Treating Survivors of War Trauma and Torture. American Psychologist, 56, 11, 1032-1039.
"History of Music Therapy." AMTA. American Music Therapy Association. 2014. Web. 20 Aug. 2014.
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