The effect of passive listening versus active observation of music and dance performances on memory recognition and mild to moderate depression in cognitively impaired older adults.

Author: Cross K, Flores R, Butterfield J, Blackman M, Lee S.
Department of Theater and Dance, California State University Fullerton, Fullerton, CA 92834, USA.
Conference/Journal: Psychol Rep.
Date published: 2012 Oct
Other: Volume ID: 111 , Issue ID: 2 , Pages: 413-23 , Word Count: 153

The study examined the effects of music therapy and dance/movement therapy on cognitively impaired and mild to moderately depressed older adults. Passive listening to music and active observation of dance accompanied by music were studied in relation to memory enhancement and relief of depressive symptoms in 100 elderly board and care residents. The Beck Depression Inventory and the Recognition Memory Test-Faces Inventory were administered to two groups (one group exposed to a live 30-min. session of musical dance observation, the other to 30 min. of pre-recorded music alone) before the intervention and measured again 3 and 10 days after the intervention. Scores improved for both groups on both measures following the interventions, but the group exposed to dance therapy had significantly lower Beck Depression scores that lasted longer. These findings suggest that active observation of Dance Movement Therapy could play a role in temporarily alleviating moderate depressive symptoms and some cognitive deficits in older adults.
PMID: 23234087