CNN: ‘The 5th Dementia’ uses music as medicine

CNN Heroes|’The 5th Dementia’ uses music as medicine
Laura Klairmong, CNN

Carol Rosenstein was recently acknowledged as a “CNN Hero” for her tremendous efforts as a family caregiver. Her husband, Irwin, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and shortly after diagnosed with dementia. His conditioned progressively worsened and his cognitive decline placed growing burden on the couple. As she became more and more consumed in her role as a caregiver, one day she heard Irwin playing the piano. She realized that despite having lived with his conditions for over 8 years, he maintained his ability to play the instrument. His cognitive functioning and communication seemed to improve while engaging in musical performance.

This observation sparked her idea to form “The 5th Dementia”, a band made up of Irwin and other people living with neurodegenerative diseases. This ultimately lead her to found a nonprofit, Music Mends Minds, which has created 20 bands across the country and impacted over 200 people with neurodegenerative disease.

To read the full CNN article, click here.

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