In his book Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain, Oliver Sacks devotes a chapter to the therapeutic role of music with people suffering from Alzheimer's. He writes of watching people with advanced dementia respond to songs that bring back memories that had seemed lost to them: "Faces assumed expressions as the old music is recognized and its emotional power felt. One of two people, perhaps, starts to sing along, others join them and soon the entire group--many of them virtually…
Everyone responds instinctively to music. A person’s ability to engage in music often remains intact far into the advanced stages of dementia. Music triggers certain networks of the brain that benefit people suffering from difficulties with language, cognition, or motor control.
Dying With Advanced Dementia in the Nursing Home | Dementia and Cognitive Impairment | JAMA Internal Medicine | The JAMA Network
Since individuals with advanced dementia cannot report their symptoms, these symptoms often are untreated, leaving them vulnerable to pain, difficulty breathing and various other conditions. We shouldn't allow these people to suffer.