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Music therapy can help dementia sufferers

Music therapy can help dementia sufferers. Photo: ITV News

A family from Falmouth have shared a moving video of their late grandmother to illustrate the way in which music therapy can help people with dementia.

It can ease the stress and anxiety caused by the condition.

Shortly before 89 year old Joyce Williams died she was filmed at a music therapy session. Watch the video below:

Joyce's granddaughter Jennifer says the sessions played a big part in the last years of her life.

She said, "When I hear that music about to kick in and hear his voice start to sing it it still brings me to tears because I think so evocative and but it just made me really happy that she'd still had even when she was so poorly still had those little moments of joy in her life."

Joyce's granddaughter Jennifer. Credit: ITV News

More and more care homes are now using music to improve the quality of life of their residents who have dementia.

Joyce's video was shared by the Methodist Home Association(MHA) as part of its drive to raise funds for providing music therapy.

Music therapist Richard Trethewey said, "I think the video explains what music therapy does in a minute and a half because it can be quite tricky explaining to people what music therapy is who it's for but that video sums it up and we can use that to show other people what can be achieved."

Credit: ITV News

There are around 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK today and by 2050 it's projected to exceed two million.

Music therapist Sally Holden said, "Individually when we get a referral we work with that person it really rather depends because for instance in Joyce's case who was having problems with her speech but she was absolutely fine remembering words when she was singing.

"In other peoples' cases there might be a behavioural issue, might be anxious or feeling very sad so we'll address that particular issue with music therapy."

Most music therapy sessions are funded through charitable donations but there are groups that want to make it a prescribed NHS therapy.

There are around 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK today. Credit: ITV News

You can watch Jeff Welch's full report on music therapy below: