Music for my Mind
Music for my Mind is an innovative charity aiming to improve the well-being of people living with dementia by creating and making personalised music playlists widely available in dementia care. The charity’s long-term vision is for every care home in Britain to have a personalised music programme that residents living with dementia can benefit from.
The basis for the research conducted by the team at Music for my Mind is that providing personally meaningful music to someone living with dementia can have a positive impact on their own well-being, and that of their family and carers too. Favourite music reaches parts of the brain that people living with dementia may no longer be able to access on their own, including memories and emotions that soothe and/or stimulate them. It can also help their engagement with loved ones, and may even reduce reliance on drug treatments.
As part of its research, the charity is using technology to identify the music which may be most memorable for people with dementia, depending on their age, background and music preferences, which can be of great benefit for those who have difficulty recalling the names of their favourite music.
The charity’s research utilises innovative technology to measure emotional responses and investigate well-being before and after exposure to personalised music, to identify how music can affect someone with dementia at challenging moments of care. The hope is that listening to favourite music at times of distress will help alleviate symptoms and improve an individual’s quality of life.
In conjunction with the Maudsley Hospital and King’s College London, Music for my Mind plans to conduct brain imaging studies, to analyse how brain activity is affected by listening to preferred and neutral music.
Music for my Mind has used its research to develop a free Playlist Maker, using accessible technology, which can create and deliver personalised playlists for people living with dementia.
Past research has identified that the age at which popular music is most memorable is between 13-19 years old (the ‘Reminiscence Bump’). Using that research, together with the individual’s known musical preferences and their family’s input, the Playlist Maker App can automatically create a personalised playlist of the music most likely to appeal to the individual. The playlist can then be enjoyed at any time, using YouTube or Spotify.
The App can be used within an individual’s home environment and in care homes, and used on any device. The App is very easy-to-use, and step-by-step guides can be found here How-to-guides
The charity is looking for more people to join their research, so if you would like to get involved in trying the App to see how it might help someone you know with dementia, and providing feedback on its use and the effect of the music, click here Try the App
207 Regent Street, London, W1B 3HH
0845 475 8202
Dementia Research UK is a company limited by guarantee in England and Wales No. 8236220 Charity No. 1154143 In Scotland Charity No. SC045615
The charity is also registered in the UK with the Information Commissioner and Fundraising Regulator.