Music lessons aid brain in later life, study finds


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The Independent Online

Music lessons as a child – whether or not you continue playing – can help the brain to perform many decades later when processing sound, a study suggests.

As people age, hearing is often compromised by changes in the brain. Older adults react more slowly to fast-changing sounds.

Researchers led by Dr Nina Kraus, from Northwestern University in Illinois, tested 44 volunteers aged 55 to 76. They found that even those who had not picked up an instrument for decades responded more quickly to a speech sound than individuals with no musical training.

The findings are published in the Journal of Neuroscience.