Alzheimer’s patients benefit from new music program

Jun 18, 2014

iPod playlists are created for each individual as part of The Roth Project: Music Memories
iPod playlists are created for each individual as part of The Roth Project: Music Memories
Credit commons.wikimedia.org

Communication is heartbreaking for families who have a loved one with Alzheimer’s.  A new music therapy project in Central and Western Kansas experienced a bit of a breakthrough reported KMUW.

Linsey Norton is the Program Director for the Central and Western chapter of the Kansas Alzheimer’s Association.  She says music has a remarkable way of interacting with the brain.

"It hits the emotional connection, which is what we really key in on in Alzheimer’s care, the holistic care model," Norton explains. "Treating the total person so we can use music to really connect with that person and their memories and calm them down, help them feel a little more at home without having to resort to drugs or other kinds of treatments."

According to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, when used appropriately, music can shift mood, manage stress-induced agitation, stimulate positive interactions, facilitate cognitive function and coordinate motor movements.

Norton recently implemented The Roth Project: Music Memories at a facility in the Wichita area.  She says she saw an immediate response.

"We reached out and put the headphones on her and just kind of started dancing and singing and she was happy as can be," Norton says. "She leaned over the woman next to her and tapped her on the arm and said, 'I'm listening to this!' and she smiled, “That’s one of my favorite memories! It was one of those this is why I do what I do moments in social work."

The Roth Project is available to community families who wish to participate through the Alzheimer’s Association of Central and Western Kansas. For more information, or to put your loved on the waiting list 
for participation (acceptance is based on the availability of equipment and resources), call Linsey Norton at 316-267-7333 or email cwkshelpline@alz.org.

Here’s contact information for the Alzheimer’s Support groups and resources in the area:

Dodge City 

Judy Fraley-Hinnergardt
1805 Fairway Drive
Dodge City, KS 67801

620-225-4309

Jan Scoggins, Co-facilitator
2114 Hart
Dodge City, KS 67801
620-225-5444
Meets the 3rd Thursday for brown bag lunch at 12:00 noon at DCF, 1509 Avenue P, Dodge City.

Garden City

Shirley Luck 1505 E. Spruce
Garden City, KS 67846
620-275-9651
Meet every 3rd Monday at 2:30
Meets at Garden Valley Retirement

Liberal
Alzheimer’s Association/Western Kansas
P. O. Box 1821
Liberal, KS 67905
580-778-3680 
Tamara Burr
Good Samaritan Society
2160 Zinnia Lane
816-564-4778 (Tamara Burr)

Alzheimer’s Association – Texas Panhandle 
(806) 356-0739

1400 Wallace Blvd

Amarillo, TX 79106-1708

Area Agency of Aging of the Panhandle in Amarillo, TX

415 West 8th Ave.
P O Box 9257
Amarillo, TX 79101 
806-331-2227

Eastern Colorado Area Agencies on Aging

La Junta

Single Entry Point (SEP) Lower Arkansas Valley Area Agency on Aging
719-383-3166

Pueblo

Pueblo Area Agency on Aging Southern Region 
719-583-6110