10 Amazing Benefits of Music Therapy

Amazing Benefits of Music Therapy
Editor's Note: This article has been recently updated with latest information and research studies.
 

Music therapy is one sure fire way to increase* your quality of life. This article will show you the benefits of music therapy on your health.

Music therapy is a professional health care act that uses music to address health issues and improve* the quality of life of a person. The practice was made popular after the first and second World Wars when musicians played music to the war veterans. But it was soon discovered that the musicians needed not to be ordinary musicians. So music therapy colleges and universities were born.

The practice has grown so much in popularity in recent years. It is for example used in hospitals to help cancer patients, children with disabilities, the elderly and those fighting stress and depression.

So without wasting much time, let’s begin looking at the health benefits of music therapy.

1. Keep Stress at Bay

Keep Stress at Bay

Music has for long been known to affect the mood of a person. It can make someone feel happy, experience a sad event and more. It’s why music therapists are trained in order to develop competently the kind of music required to the problem at hand.

Stress is usually found in the elderly, children with disabilities, people with drug addictions and more.

2. Improve* Memory

People with a disease like dementia, which have symptoms like memory loss, show improvement in remembering things after some music therapy sessions. Music has been known to evoke past experiences in the brain. It is said that music interacts with part of the brain that specializes in memory. It stimulates it to start remembering things that had happened long ago.

3. Reduce* Depression and Anxiety

Music therapy will help a person respect themselves and recognize that they are unique. Playing music requires that one is focused on it. It tends to make the brain forget the worries and experience something new. People can then express themselves freely. And in the end, they are in a better position to see the word from a more positive side.

In addition, playing music requires some form of movement, and studies have showed that movement can fight depression and anxiety.

4. Improving* Communication

In a music therapy session, a person is sometimes required to sing. This requires the person to know the words well. Singing will demand that they say the words appropriately and in time. This can then be used in real life. People with disabilities who wouldn’t previously talk properly have learned to talk music therapy.

5. More Socialization

People who are stressed or depressed because of maybe diseases like cancer, socialize better when they have had music therapy. Music will evoke emotions in people they may haven’t experienced in a long time. These can make them realize that the world is different from what they see. Some music therapy sessions are done in groups. This encourages the individuals to know each other and share their life experiences. This can then go on even after the music therapy sessions.

6. Better Movement and Coordination

Movement and Coordination

It’s our body parts like the hands and legs that do the actual movement. But all that is because of the brain. It tells the muscles what to do, when to do it, how to do etc. However, sometimes the brain can fail to do that function. But thanks to music therapy, that can be fixed sometimes. Playing with a rhythmic beat involves that part of the brain that controls movement and coordination. It’s the same thing when you dance, the brain will slowly learn to control the muscles if you hadn’t moved for some time.

It is mostly true for children with disabilities or people who have lost control of their mobility because of other diseases.

7. Deal with Pain

Studies have showed that music therapy can help people with cancers deal with the pain. It is from one study that was done on children suffering from the disease. More studies are still underway but from the preliminary findings, the results have been encouraging. Perhaps this will be one way of dealing with cancer in future. Let’s just keep our fingers crossed.

8. Control Emotions

Music helps people experience emotions like sadness or anger and many others in a controlled environment. It enables them to deal with that same emotion in real life better.

People suffering from diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s for example, have troubles keeping their emotions in control. They are sometimes very aggressive to those around them. But after music therapy sessions, these symptoms usually improve* and the person can normally live. This was also proved by some researched papers.

9. Reduce* Fear

We all have fears. Some fear of losing a job, others about losing a loved one who is sick and much more. But music can help anyone cope with these kinds of fears. Music takes our minds on a journey that can change the way we think.

10. Improve* Immunity

Last one on our top ten music therapy benefits is immunity. Studies have proved that listening to music promotes* the production of the antibody immunoglobulin A and natural killer cells. These defend our bodies from viruses.

In addition, music also helps reduce* a stress hormone called cortisol. In case you didn’t know, stress can weaken our immune system.

So there, you have it. As you can see, there are so many health benefits of music therapy. We all should then use it to our advantage. Music is fun; it is inexpensive and as we have discovered, time listening or playing music is time well spent. So if you think you have a problem, music therapy is the answer.

References:

  • Bruscia, K. (ed.) (1998). The dynamics of music psychotherapy. Gilsum, NH: BarcelonaPublishers.Crowe, B. J., & Colwell, C. (Eds.). (2007).
  • Effective clinical practice in music therapy: Music therapy for children, adolescents, and adults with mental disorders. Silver Spring, MD:American Music Therapy Association.
  • Gorman, C. (2005, November 14). Music and the mind.Time
  • Clark, M.E., Lipe, A.W., & Bilbrey, M. (1998). Use of music to decrease* aggressive behaviors in people with dementia. Journal of Gerontological Nursing.
  • Hsu, W., & Lai, H. (2004). Effects of Music on Major Depression in Psychiatric Inpatients. Archives ofPsychiatric Nursing,

Take Action: Support Consumer Health Digest by linking to this article from your website

Permalink to this article:

Embed article link: (Click to copy HTML code below):

Reprinting this article:
Non-commercial use OK, cite ConsumerHealthDigest.com with clickable link.


 
Author

Expert Author : Dr. Ahmed Zayed (Consumer Health Digest)

Dr. Ahmed Zayed Helmy holds a baccalaureate of Medicine and Surgery. He has completed his degree in 2011 at the University of Alexandria, Egypt. Dr. Ahmed believes in providing knowledgeable information to readers. Other than his passion for writing, currently he is working as a Plastic surgeon and is doing his masters at Ain shams University.