Hi, I am caregiver for Winston, my BFF. He is 70 years old, diagnosed with PD in 2004. He is a classical pianist, yet he can still play. Most pieces are still playable for him when he feels energetic. Some he can’t play anymore, bc it’s too fast a piece. He’s also still able to sew, thread a needle (large) with both hands at the same time! His doctors are always impressed that he’s still able to function at this level. I credit it completely to his determination and that he was a child prodigy of above average intelligence. In his case, I do think his mind and finger memory override the Parkinson’s at times. Does anyone else take care of a musician?

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God love you. You have taken on a BIG responsibility. Music is one of the things the brain can enjoy way into Dementia and ALZ. There was a man in Moms NH who was blind. They had a performer come in who sang oldies. This man knew the words to every song. When things were quiet, they would wheel him to sit right in front of the stereo. I had my daughters handheld old battery operated CD player. You know, those ones out before the ipods? I gave it to him so he could listen to his music wherever he was.
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Reply to JoAnn29

I'm sure you're right that trained musical brains seem to have extra powers that endure for longer. My grandmother, whose mind "wandered" as they used to say, still hummed whole concertos; and a singer I knew who developed LBD, very sadly, scaled back his performances from opera to oratorio to recitals to making music with his family circle as time went on. The Alzheimers Society runs and sponsors 'Singing for the Brain' groups. I think it's very well established that 'music has powers to soothe' not only the savage breast.

I'm not sure what you'll find is best as the disease progresses. Some people still want to listen to recordings and continue to enjoy the music they love, but I can imagine that for professional performers it must sometimes be frustrating that they're no longer able to take part (though God willing that won't be for a while yet). Does Winston have a collection of favourite recordings for you to fall back on? Does he enjoy listening to other people's playing?
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Reply to Countrymouse

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