Fight Alzheimer’s With Music Lessons

According to legend, Nero fiddled while Rome burned. But despite his unpopularity with the Roman populace, he had a decent chance of retaining the flames of memory as he aged (if he hadn’t committed suicide at age 31) thanks to his musical predilection.

A study at Emory University shows that older individuals who spend a significant amount of time throughout life playing musical instruments have brains that don’t succumb as readily to the vagaries of aging.

“Musical activity throughout life may serve as a challenging cognitive exercise, making your brain fitter and more capable of accommodating the challenges of aging,” says lead researcher Brenda Hanna-Pladdy. “Since studying an instrument requires years of practice and learning, it may create alternate connections in the brain that could compensate for cognitive declines as we get older.”

Hanna-Pladdy’s research shows that high-level musicians who study the longest perform the best on the cognitive tests, followed by the low-level musicians and non-musicians, revealing a trend relating to years of musical practice. In her experiment, the high-level musicians had statistically significant higher scores than the non-musicians on cognitive tests relating to visual and spatial memory, naming objects and cognitive flexibility (the brain’s ability to adapt to new information).

Easy Health Options Staff

By Easy Health Options Staff

Submitted by the staff at Easy Health Options®.