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caukulele
12-30-2012, 01:16 PM
I just wanted to share a story about the healing power of the ukulele…. My 91 year old uncle has been in the hospital for a few days. He has the beginnings of dementia, and now seems to have suffered a series of strokes. I was with him most of the day yesterday and he was agitated the whole day, and so it was difficult finding out ways to comfort him. Today I brought my ukulele, because he loves music, and when I started playing it was incredible to see the transformation in him. His face lit up and he loved it, even trying to sing with me, and eventually dozed off peacefully, I continued to play softly in the background as he slept, and he would sleep for awhile then wake up and give me a huge toothless grin and then go back to sleep. My aunt (in her mid eighties) said it was the calmest she has seen him since he arrived at the hospital. It just shows the power of music and love to break through boundaries and sooth….

mm stan
12-30-2012, 01:22 PM
Aloha Denise,
Wow sorry to hear of your uncles condition and the mini strokes and dementia....but I am glad he responded so well to music and your uke playing.. I guess it helps soothe him and get
him to relax....I am sure it jots his long term memory of fun times and his favorite songs....good job girl...thank you for sharing...

Normagal
12-30-2012, 01:23 PM
I'm sorry he's not doing well,but it's so sweet that you calmed him with our uke.

connor013
12-30-2012, 01:31 PM
That is a great story. I like the part about you sitting with your uncle all day.

I've been thinking a lot about family lately, and your post confirms some of those thoughts, so thank you for that. I hope it gets better for your aunt and uncle.

vanflynn
12-30-2012, 01:32 PM
Thank you for a wonderful story. It's great that you could connect with him through your Uke. Helping put him at ease is the greatest gift you could bring. Hope he improves quickly.

caukulele
12-30-2012, 02:01 PM
Yes, I thought I would share my experience, because it might help someone else.. Music can sometimes really help with healing, and break through areas that words can not...

Hippie Dribble
12-30-2012, 02:08 PM
Such a beautiful thing Denise, thankyou.

I worked for a number of years as a music therapist and P/T carer in the dementia unit of a nursing home, and I can relate to your story very much. The power of music to illicit a wide range of emotional responses is quite incredible. It truly awakens the soul.

Bless you and may you continue to bring comfort to your uncle and aunt in this way.

Nickie
12-30-2012, 02:15 PM
Way to go Denise. I am a hospice nurse/music therapist, so I totally relate...

pdxuke
12-30-2012, 02:32 PM
There are many studies that show patients respond to music, especially dementia patients. It's wonderful to hear from a real person in a real situation and to hear of your success. My best to you and your uncle!

Hippie Dribble
12-30-2012, 02:39 PM
a great book you may be interested in Denise, is Musicophilia (http://www.amazon.com/Musicophilia-Tales-Music-Revised-Expanded/dp/1400033535/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1356917828&sr=1-1&keywords=musicophilia), by the venerable Oliver Sachs. Full of amazing personal anecdotes, studies and facts related to the effect of music upon the brain. With a focus particularly on those people who suffer from brain disorders and degenerative neurological conditions, whether they be generic or acquired. Brilliant book and very inspirational and encouraging to people like yourself beginning this kind of work.

KimosTherapy
12-30-2012, 02:51 PM
Great story! Aaahhh ... the healing power of music, and in this case - the healing power of the uke! Love it!

Here's a very touching video which validates the healing power of music:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fyZQf0p73QM

caukulele
12-30-2012, 02:55 PM
a great book you may be interested in Denise, is Musicophilia (http://www.amazon.com/Musicophilia-Tales-Music-Revised-Expanded/dp/1400033535/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1356917828&sr=1-1&keywords=musicophilia), by the venerable Oliver Sachs. Full of amazing personal anecdotes, studies and facts related to the effect of music upon the brain. With a focus particularly on those people who suffer from brain disorders and degenerative neurological conditions, whether they be generic or acquired. Brilliant book and very inspirational and encouraging to people like yourself beginning this kind of work.

Thank you all for your kind comments, and also for the link Jon. I think it's a book I need to get.

caukulele
12-30-2012, 02:56 PM
Great story! Aaahhh ... the healing power of music, and in this case - the healing power of the uke! Love it!

Here's a very touching video which validates the healing power of music:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fyZQf0p73QM

Wonderful video! Thanks so much for sharing this.

KimosTherapy
12-30-2012, 03:21 PM
Wonderful video! Thanks so much for sharing this.


Mahalo for sharing your touching story! I have many years of experience working in the ER, ICU, and also with the elderly. I've seen first hand how the healing power of music positively affects patients.

NatalieS
12-30-2012, 03:34 PM
What a wonderful story... I'm so glad your uncle was given happiness and peace by your playing. :)

itsme
12-30-2012, 04:44 PM
Some years ago I sang with a Christmas caroling group and we would perform at nursing homes, usually in the rec room. After the "show" the rest of the group would go up and down the hallways, singing for those who couldn't make it, while I stayed behind and played some solo fingerpicking Christmas stuff on my classical guitar.

After I was done, a lady came up to me and thanked me. She said her father had been non-responsive for months (his bed had been wheeled into the rec room) and that while I was playing, he squeezed her hand and started to cry.

I will never forget that and how much the power of music can affect and move people.

nighthunte29
12-31-2012, 12:12 AM
What a great story, could it be an example of how the brain reacts to certain frequencies differently?
I know many artists down tune their instruments to -8mhz, so it is played in 432mhz rather than the normal 440. People such as Bob Marley, and Radiohead, at a guess I'd say Iz too. The music then has a much more positive effect on the brain. Definitely something worth looking in to!

Maluhia,
Sam

teruterubouzu
12-31-2012, 01:05 AM
This is a beautiful story. I'm glad you were able to bring some comfort to your uncle. Hospitals and nursing homes can be confusing places for patients (heck, and their loved ones) and music can be so calming and helpful.

cahaya
12-31-2012, 01:25 AM
this is a wonderful story, thank you for sharing

Nicko
12-31-2012, 02:40 AM
The reason I decided to get a uke was to learn to play a bit for my mother, who lives with dementia -- only in her mid-70s. She loves music, singing, and dancing, which are very strong medicines. They create order and beauty and life in a space like little else can do.

Now, if I could just get a few old songs under my belt, we'll be ready to roll.

Thanks for sharing this!

N

caukulele
12-31-2012, 02:51 AM
Thanks for all the sharing. It's wonderful to hear the experience of others....

Hochapeafarm
01-01-2013, 09:40 PM
What a beautiful, uplifting, moving story -- thank you for sharing! I have Miniature horses and one of the activities that I do with them is nursing home visits. Recently, I visited a nursing home to attend their annual "open house" party with my friend and her Mini horse (I helped out with photography on this particular occasion). There was a husband and wife duo band at the event -- the husband played the uke and the wife was singing...and my friend's Mini horse danced on his hind legs to the music! The residents and staff just loved it! My heart melted and I was moved to tears so many times, I had a hard time fulfilling my role as a volunteer photographer. The power and magic of music (especially uke music!) and animal therapies is simply undeniably amazing! My best to you and your family!