Latest News » Local support group uses singing to cope with Alzheimer’s

A local support group in Tennessee is using singing as a way of dealing with Alzheimer's disease and memory loss.

As one of the world's leading causes of death, and currently afflicting over 5 million people in America alone, Alzheimer's disease is one of the biggest scourges of medical science. Even more frustrating than the debilitating and fatal effects that Alzheimer's has on brain health is the fact that there's still no cure in sight. Nevertheless, researchers and patients alike continue to make strides in finding new ways to slow down the progression of the disease. 

Music has shown to hold some promise on that front. We shared with you last month a study that found listening to familiar pieces of music could help jog memory support and other feelings of self-awareness that are typically lost to Alzheimer's. A patient support group in Chattanooga, Tennessee, is now experimenting with the flip side of that idea: Singing to ward off memory loss.

WRCB-TV, a local news affiliate, reports that the "Let's Sing From Memory" group meets twice a month at a local church to practice singing as a form of coping with Alzheimer's disease and dementia. According to the source, nearly 30 elderly patients and their caretakers join in the bi-monthly group to bolster the strength of their memories and better connect with others.

"Our oldest memories will survive the longest. Music is often associated with something that happened to us when we were very, very young," Amy French, an educational program manager with the Alzheimer's Association, told the news outlet. "When an individual who has dementia is exposed to music, participates in music, very often it stimulates parts of their brain that aren't often stimulated. They have a much more rich and in-depth experience, a much more connected experience."

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