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Hidden Musical Talent

Hidden Musical Talent

We often talk about the importance of encouraging someone with Alzheimer's or dementia to return to an old hobby, or even develop a new hobby while they are still able to do so. We wrote about it in one of our recent articles on dementia about Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI), and we suggest it as a way to help a person with dementia stay active in our "Habits, Routines and Hobbies" article.

We recently came across an interesting article that reports on a person who started taking lessons to learn how to play the saxophone after receiving a diagnosis of frontotemporal dementia (FTD). His wife “thought that playing a musical instrument would soothe his abnormal behaviors”.

In this article, the researcher suggests that the explanation for this person's success is that “as the parts of the brain begin to deteriorate, their artistic creativity may be unleashed”. An interesting observation is that it is very common for those diagnosed with this particular type of dementia (FTD dementia) to enjoy or relate to music. They may like to listen to it, sing songs, or in some rare cases even show a new found talent for it.


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