The Role of Music in the Lives of Older Adults With Dementia Ageing in Place: A Scoping Review

M. Elliott
P. Gardner


The number of people around the world living with dementia is predicted to rise from 44 million to 135 million by 2050. Traditional treatments for dementia have been largely unsuccessful and prompted the emergence of alternative strategies. Music is emerging as an effective therapeutic strategy for older adults with dementia however, most of the work to date has focused on institutions. The purpose of this scoping review was to summarize what is known about the role and impact that music plays in the lives of community-dwelling older adults with dementia. Using a five-stage framework for conducting a scoping review, analysis revealed three ways in which music influences the lives of community-dwelling older adults with dementia: (a) reduced agitation, (b) improved cognition, and (c) enhanced social well-being. The concept of personhood provided a lens with which to conceptualize the findings and highlights the need for continued research.