What is music therapy?
Music therapy is the utilization of musical interventions to help patients improve their mental health and overall well-being. Music therapy is performed by credentialed and trained music therapists and has been proven to improve quality of life, especially for people with conditions such as chronic pain, anxiety, agitation, and depression.
Why a music therapist?
Music therapists are clinically trained therapists, as well as musicians. Because of their clinical training, a music therapist is able to understand patients’ unique circumstances and custom-tailor musical interventions that seek not just to entertain, but to support the goals of the care team as well as maximize the patients ability to experience and benefit from music. Music therapists are an integral part of the hospice team and pull from a wide skillset to best provide support, both to the patient and to the family.
How can music therapy help?
- Reduce Cognitive Decline
- Music therapists ensure that patients are not just entertained, but active participants in the music making process, whether it is through singing, instrument playing, or whatever means is the most approachable. This assists in keeping the brain active and engaged, reducing cognitive decline.
- Processing Emotions
- As patients experience a wide variety of emotions, music therapists are able to assist patients with processing emotions by providing musical experiences to support them, even if the patient is unable to speak or find the right words to express their feelings.
- Supporting Quality of Life
- Patients often lose the ability to do many things that bring them enjoyment, leading to depression and agitation. Music therapy can support an increased quality of life to prevent or slow the progression of depression.
Who provides music therapy at Heartford?
Heartford Hospice partners with Brian Hotchkiss, MMT, MT-BC, from Golden Memories Music Therapy. To learn about Golden Memories, click here.