A Music Therapy Respite Program for Caregivers of Individuals With Memory Loss


Becky Wellman


Music Therapy Perspectives




Music therapy has been a known positive and impactful intervention for adults with memory loss, but previous research and program reports have focused mainly on residents in long-term care facilities. In this study, a caregiver survey was utilized to learn how Music Therapy Respite, a community-based drop-in program, benefited caregivers and their care partner and if this changed based on attendance in a professionally led support group. One hundred twenty-eight surveys were collected over 23 sessions in a 4-month period. Survey results showed that stress and anxiety decreased and mood changed for the better for both caregivers and group participants, but attendance in the support group did not significantly impact these changes. Future research with more rigor, consistency, and additional measures such as changes in cognitive testing, and individual responses within sessions is needed to clearly define community-based benefit, needs, and full impact of music therapy for this population. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2021 APA, all rights reserved)

Music and Health Institute Terms

Alzheimer's and Related Dementias; Anxiety; Caregivers; Mood; Music Therapy; Neurodegenerative Disorders; Psychological Outcomes; Stress

Indexed Terms

memory loss; dementia; caregiver; group music; Caregivers; Communities; Memory; Surveys; Support Groups

Study Type

Case Study; Qualitative Methods

Document Type