Seeking Positive Pathways

Carol Waarala, MSW, LMSW, Certified Specialist in Aging & Dementia

The Importance of Reaching Out: Music, Touch & Spirituality

reaching-outReaching out to someone with dementia is a way to reconnect and make them feel secure, safe, cherished, human, connected, grounded, and not alone. All that with simple touch. Touch is the first sense that we develop while we are still a fetus – before we have developed cognition and it is one that still is recognized by a person with dementia.

Hearing is the second sense we develop as a fetus and music connects us with past experiences and emotion. The power of music, including singing, unlocks memories and reaches parts of the brain better than other ways of communication.

Spirituality is complex and means different things for each one of us. For some it’s religion, for others it can be art, music, nature, and relationships. Spirituality is part of every human being.

So among the many changes that happen to someone with dementia, there is still a person in there! And the key to opening that part of the person can often be Touch, Music, and Spirituality.