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Title: The effect of regular listening to preferred music on pain, depression and anxiety in older people in residential care
Author: Costa, Fiona
ISNI:       0000 0004 5921 9760
Awarding Body: University of Roehampton
Current Institution: University of Roehampton
Date of Award: 2015
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Music can be particularly beneficial for older people, many of whom have conditions that compromise their quality of life. It can be accessed irrespective of cognitive or physical capacity and can be enjoyed until the end of life; it is inexpensive and readily available. However, despite the widespread belief in music’s therapeutic effects, it has proved difficult to accumulate sufficient evidence to satisfy health professionals of its potential benefits to health and wellbeing. This research evaluates the effect of listening to preferred music on the wellbeing of older people living in care homes. One hundred and thirteen participants were randomly allocated to either an experimental or a control group. The former, in addition to their usual routine, listened to 30 minutes of preferred music over a three-week period. Weekly assessments, using validated measures with some adaptation, evaluated levels of pain, depression and anxiety, each a common condition in this population. On completion of the programme, the groups switched over, thus enabling all participants to receive the potential benefits of the music intervention. Results showed statistically significant decreases for each dependent variable with the size of the effect being greater for depression and anxiety than for pain. There were no significant improvements for those in the control group. Thematic analysis of the qualitative data gave further insight into the various ranges of response to the music intervention and identified those most likely to benefit from regular listening: those who listen frequently, have had some previous engagement with music and who regard music as important. It also raised awareness of the challenges that may arise at this stage of life. It was concluded that listening to preferred music is able to benefit many of the care home population, although not all will benefit to the same degree.
Supervisor: Ockelford, Adam ; Hargreaves, David Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available