Music Therapy with Adults with Learning Disabilities

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  6. Music Therapy with Adults with Learning Disabilities - Dimensions.

Melanie works as an outreach and community Music Therapist in and around the greater London area, both independently and on behalf of Richmond Music Trust. Melanie has experience working with a diverse and varied client base and specialises in working with elderly adults and elderly adults with mental health issues, learning disabilities and dementia.

learning disability music therapy | Evidence search | NICE

Music therapy used the inherent restorative and healing qualities of music as a means of bringing about positive change through interaction, emotional communication and self-expression within the safe structure of a therapeutic relationship,. In the sessions, group members will be invited to choose from and play a selection of tuned and untuned percussion instruments.


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  • Often group sessions can include reflective dialogue and the sharing of feelings, during which arising emotional themes can be explored. Music making in this way with others is a social activity that involves sharing, listening and communication. In therapy, these skills can be developed and built upon with other group members. In this way, attendees can develop a greater awareness of themselves and how they relate to others in their daily lives.

    This can improve both self-esteem and confidence in the ability to form relationships with others outside of therapy. It also provides them with positive ways of making their needs known. Music therapy can play a key role in developmental work degenerative mental illness such as dementia.

    Chiltern Music Therapy: Let's Sing!

    Sharing and answering musical phrases therefore developing basic concepts of social conversation. Using song to stimulate speech. Developing fine and gross motor skills Facilitating interactive and imaginative play. Encourage interactive play.

    Music Therapy - Adults with a Learning Disability

    Encouraging initiative and spontaneity. Using rhythm to stimulate gross movement — dancing, walking, jumping etc.. Developing co-ordination and encouraging clients to cross the mid-line. Helps to improve social skills such as turn -taking, waiting, listening, eye contact.

    Additional information

    Promotes a sense of self in relation to others. Develops self-esteem and self-worth. Encourages clients to explore and express their feelings.