When daniela wagner comes to visit, the entire nursing home willy-brandt-haus area gathers in the rough lounge on the first floor. For the past year, she has been visiting this protected space for patients suffering from dementia once a month. "Every hour is different and exciting, says wagner about her time in the nursing home. Sometimes everyone joins in with enthusiasm, and sometimes it’s rather restless. It is always a surprise.
It has been proven for a long time that music appeals to certain areas of our brain that are not reached by language. For neurological diseases such as stroke, parkinson’s or dementia, as well as depression in old age, the use of music can do much to improve quality of life. Because music goes to the heart and transports emotions that activate the brain. The patients remember their childhood, earlier events and experiences. "It can be very emotional at times", says the music school director of the august kompel music school. Of course, music does not cure the disease, but it can have a very positive effect. "Despite severe dementia, the participants are often fully involved", says wagner, who last year completed her training in what is known as music geragogy.
Offers for seniors
The city called for the project "music with heart and brain" within the framework of the health city 2017 for one year at two care facilities in bad bruckenau. In addition to the willy brandt house, this also affected the romershag castle nursing home. Now this challenge is coming to an end. "The financial support for the project should be seen as a boost", says karin bauer from the tourist info. The city wanted to show the nursing facilities with the demand the possibilities of a geriatric music offer. Whether and in what form the project will be included in the program by the houses is now up to them, bauer added. "From my point of view the project is very well accepted. I hope there is a possibility that the music lessons will continue", says wagner.
Sabine preisendorfer, facility manager of the willy-brandt-haus senior citizens’ residential complex, is delighted with the monthly music sessions. "We don’t have the personnel resources at the moment to offer our residents a similar program", says preisendorfer. Nevertheless they could not say yet, how it continues with the music hours.
A permanent fixture
In contrast, roberto ranelli, director of the nursing home at romershag castle, is very sure about the future of the music lessons. Here the pilot project is a complete success. "The hour is a fixed part of our house and will remain so in the future – with or without funding from the city", says ranelli. He has seen with enthusiasm how the residents have accepted the music lessons. "I am really impressed by the quality and level of ms. Wagner’s work", emphasizes ranelli. Because the various clinical pictures require trained knowledge and empathy on the part of the teacher. "We in the house can’t afford music lessons like that, you need a pro for that", he says. Wagner will therefore continue her teaching at the romershag nursing home in the coming year.