Music therapy improving lives as people living with dementia tune in

Research funded by the Federal Government highlights the potential of musical reminiscence therapy in reducing negative symptoms and improving the lives of older Australians living with dementia.


“Successful therapies like this that focus on wellbeing and quality of life must be given top priority, particularly as our Government moves to regulate and minimise the use of restraint in the aged care sector,” said Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care Ken Wyatt.


The Silver Memories radio service conducted the $150,000 12-month trial of their nostalgia music broadcasts across 16 residential aged care homes.


“Every one of the 74 residents who participated showed significant improvements in quality of life as well as reductions in depression, agitation and physical aggression,” said Mr Wyatt.


“This demonstrates the positive and sometimes profound effects of music in helping manage dementia.”


Dementia is a group of diseases that progressively affect the brain, compromising thought processes, behaviour, memory and the ability to perform everyday tasks.


More than 436,000 people are currently living with dementia in Australia, and around 250 Australians develop dementia every day.


The research can be found on the Silver Memories website –, and how it works can be seen at


28 March 2019.