Learning A Musical Instrument

Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by Grey Lad, Aug 12, 2015.

  1. Grey Lad

    Grey Lad Registered User

    Sep 12, 2014
    5,736
    North East Lincs
    I am just wondering if anyone has had positive results with learning a musical instrument when dementia is present? My O H always talks of tinkering on the piano and I wonder if this is something to encourage. One of our neighbours has a piano and is willing to help. Any suggestions?
     
  2. Chuggalug

    Chuggalug Registered User

    Mar 24, 2014
    8,007
    Norfolk
    Has she ever been able to play?
     
  3. Grey Lad

    Grey Lad Registered User

    Sep 12, 2014
    5,736
    North East Lincs
    She used to tinker on her dad's piano and talks fondly of him playing by ear.
     
  4. Sammyjo1

    Sammyjo1 Registered User

    Jul 8, 2014
    194
    #4 Sammyjo1, Aug 12, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2015
    I've read somewhere that it is a good thing to do things like playing a musical instrument if you have dementia as it helps to keep the brain active.

    My OH used to play classical guitar years ago and I've now got him back onto trying to play again. The thing I find best is not to put any pressure on him but to let him go at his own pace, being encouraging and supportive. And also to reassure him that he needs to learn from the beginning to get familiar with it again and it's normal not to be able to pick up from where he left off.

    It's going very slowly but I do leave it up to him. If he hasn't done anything for a few days then I try and bring it gently into the conversation and if he doesn't want to do it, then I let it lie.

    Sorry posted this while you posted your last comment. It may still be worth thinking about a one-off "lesson" for someone to come and play the piano with her but warn them she may not feel up to it when they arrive
     
  5. Grey Lad

    Grey Lad Registered User

    Sep 12, 2014
    5,736
    North East Lincs
    #5 Grey Lad, Aug 12, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2015
    Next door neighbour has a piano is supportive and used to be a teacher. Just a question of setting up a tinkering session.
     
  6. Chuggalug

    Chuggalug Registered User

    Mar 24, 2014
    8,007
    Norfolk
    See an interest; encourage it, is what I say. Stops time being spent on the worst aspects of dementia. Will give your loved one something else to perhaps think about and get interested in, no matter how long it lasts. I hope you've found something that helps, Grey Lad. I really do, xxxxxxxxxxxxx
     
  7. Grey Lad

    Grey Lad Registered User

    Sep 12, 2014
    5,736
    North East Lincs
    You know me Chuggs I keep seeing if there is anything that might just help. G L
     
  8. crafty_coff

    crafty_coff Registered User

    Aug 11, 2015
    3
    hobbies

    my mother came home from her daycare with knitting, she used to love it but I thought she just wouldn't be able to remember or do it, but she is making progress, it's wonderful, even if she only does it for 5 mins at a time, it distracts her from asking me the time? so yeah to the piano, or anything that encourages fun.
     
  9. esmeralda

    esmeralda Registered User

    Nov 27, 2014
    3,072
    Devon
    Neighbour sounds very helpful but maybe she also needs the opportunity just to play about as and when she wants without feeling she has an audience. Have you thought about an electronic keyboard, perhaps in addition to the neighbour. Pressure to learn (however gentle) might be counterproductive as it could lead to a sense of failure and frustration. Hope it works out.
    xxxxxxxxxxx
     
  10. Chuggalug

    Chuggalug Registered User

    Mar 24, 2014
    8,007
    Norfolk
    Well spoken, Es. I thought the same, xxxxxxxxxxx
     
  11. Grey Lad

    Grey Lad Registered User

    Sep 12, 2014
    5,736
    North East Lincs
    No pressure here and my Sous Chef has been working well alongside me in the kitchen this morning. It's another morning when we cancelled the carer as it was someone we didn't know. Togetherness is a lovely feeling: hope she is keeping and eye on the spuds while I'm up here!
     
  12. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,725
    Female
    London
    I don't think you have to "learn" an instrument to have fun with it. My OH has never in his life played the piano, but if he sees one he'll start bashing around on it. And as for that time someone sat him in front of drums... Let's just say it was loud!
     

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