Each Music Therapy programme is carefully designed, planned and evaluated on an ongoing basis alongside with the parent, carer or team. Our person centred care plans ultimately aim to help clients function as independently as possible in their daily lives.
Sessions can take place on a one-to-one basis or in group settings. The clients can be seen in our clinic spaces in Limerick and Dublin, or in outreach services such as nursing homes, hospitals and community centres. Sessions take place on a weekly basis.
By using a variety of techniques (e.g. singing, instrument playing, movement to music, song-writing, song reminiscence, lyric analysis), the therapist works towards the goals that are specifically created for the individual or group, upon assessment of the clients' strengths, needs and personal preferences.
For example, the therapist may help a bereaving child write their own song, enhancing their emotional expression and helping them through the grieving process. Or the therapist may use a variety of familiar songs in a systematic way to enhance vocalisations for a child with Autism who is non-verbal.
Each session (group or individual) is tailored to meet the identified needs and goals of the client. Just as no two people are the same, different techniques will elicit different outcomes in clients. Hence our delivery of a range of techniques are carefully tailored to meet each participant’s needs and abilities, as well as addressing their specific goals for intervention.
A variety of techniques may be applied at a session, including the following:
• Clinical Improvisation: Provides a platform for expression without the constraints and limitations of structured music or language.
• Music based games: Used to increase attention span, promote application to task (demonstrating how to complete a task, step by step), eye contact and turn taking.
• Instrument playing: To enhance motor skills and reduce agitation.
• Listening to music: Fosters relaxation and provides a means of emotional expression by enabling the client to relate to what is being expressed in the music.
• Song Writing and Composition: Helps clients express their feelings and communicate through the development of their own songs, giving them the freedom to express their inner thoughts and emotions. The written word gives the therapist a window to the client's mind/world and opens up a route on which to build a therapeutic relationship to further explore their feelings.
• Singing Familiar Songs: Enhances speech and language skills, motivates, promotes a sense of belonging and connectedness and decreases levels of agitation.
• Lyric Analysis: Provides a platform to discuss and relate some of the person's experience to what is being expressed in the songs.
• Relaxation to Music: Assists in emotional regulation and stress reduction.
• Movement to Music: Helps to reduce stress/tension and promotes self-regulation.