by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
Active Retirees : Active Retirees June-July 2012
30 | www.probussouthpacific.org feature convinced that the benefits extend beyond what a scientific study can prove. Kirkwood believes that music is important not because of a verifiable neurological effect, but because it empowers people to control their own surroundings. “You only have to see people in a snoezelen room to know that changing your own environment is important to wellbeing,” she explains. Snoezelen rooms were first developed in the Netherlands in the 1970s. They are multisensory rooms where colour, light and sound can be changed, either by a therapist or the person in the room, to create different kinds of environments. “People with dementia might spend time in the room while operators change the sound and light to alert the participant’s brain more,” Kirkwood says. “Or, if the participant is agitated, the sound and light can be adjusted to calm them down.” Given that an estimated 267,000 people currently live with dementia in Australia, and that this number is expected to grow to one million by 2050, finding ways to improve the quality of life of people with such conditions is a pressing concern. Kirkwood does not suggest that we need to build more snoezelen rooms, but that we need to look at the reason snoezelen rooms improve wellbeing. “As people use such rooms they become more active and control the environment they are in. They press buttons to turn lights or films on, or to trigger sounds and music. It is beneficial because people are active and actively participate in life.” Music by itself, then, may not contain any special healing powers. Instead, health When you’re in a choir, you’re with people of all ages. Meeting younger people is essential if you want to stay active and engaged with your community. 1 Musical organs With just 337 people donating organs in Australia last year, while 1600 people awaited transplants, it is vital that as many donations as possible are successful. Japanese scientists have recently reported that mice exposed to opera or classical music have a higher chance of surviving organ transplants due to a stronger immune system. Mice that listened to new age music had no increase in immunity. 2 rhythM and stroke Music can aid in the rehabilitation of the 20 million people suffering from stroke each year, many of whom struggle to regain movement. US researchers used rhythm-based musical therapy in stroke rehabilitation and found that participants improved walking speed and spatial awareness. 3 PerforMing with Parkinson’s The Fort Wayne Philharmonic in Illinois has teamed up with researchers to find out if participating in live musical performance can calm the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease. The partnership was forged after a member of the Philharmonic who had Parkinson’s reported that his tremors disappeared when he performed. 4 Pain refrain The use of music to treat pain is perhaps the oldest form of medicine. Modern science is just beginning to understand why music can relieve pain. Neuroscientists believe that music disrupts the brain’s pain-stress-pain feedback loop, especially when the music is associated with good memories. 5 take the Pressure down Hong Kong researchers have found that older people who listen to relaxing music for 25 minutes a day lowered their systolic pressure (the top number in a blood pressure reading) by 12 points and their diastolic pressure (the bottom number) by 5 points. A control group that did not listen to music had no change in blood pressure. 5 Musical Medical Breakthroughs
Active Retirees April-May 2012
Active Retirees Aug-Sept 2012