Music Therapy: 10 Health Benefits Of Listening To Music
Listening to music has been proven to be a trusted therapy with lots of benefits – emotional, physical, psychological, spiritual and health-wise.
Mood swings, depression, drug addiction, insomnia, suicidal thoughts etc, can be reduced with the help of music therapy and it works like magic.
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Just like some unexplainable emotions run through your mind the moment your favorite song comes on the radio, or a special song that reminds you of someone or something, there is more to listening to music than our body can interpret.
Music Therapy – Here are some benefits
A couple of times you must have experienced some good feeling by just listening to a song, and sometimes catch yourself tearing up by the words of the song – that is just one of the things music can do to you, there are more.
1. Music Relieves Stress
Music is powerful and helps you work through your problems. There is this feeling of inner peace that music, especially, Inspirational, Soul, Jazz, Rhythm and Blues brings.
It helps you communicate with the softest part of your emotions and sometimes releases some hormones that may lead you to tears.
Do not feel shy to cry at the sound of a song, it just shows you are a human with a conscious. Crying represent feelings that must be expressed and it helps relieves you at the end of the day. Crying is also a form of stress relieve.
2. Inspires Creativity
People who listen to music while working are usually happier, more productive, less distracted and do not feel the intensity of the work.
Finnish researchers found that the mind-wandering mode goes into action when your brain processes a song, thus inspiring creativity.
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This does not apply to artists alone. The relaxing effect of music can be experienced by a blogger, banker, tailor, doctor or any professional who has a need to concentrate and shut out the world from their work.
It will interest you to know that doctors have a specific playlist for different types of surgery. Anthony Youn, M.D. cites a study published in Surgical Endoscopy that says classical music affects surgeons more positively than hard rock or heavy metal. It also helps the patient relax and recover faster.
3. Reduces Blood Pressure
In Africa, loud music [often called street music], is the dominating music as most people just want to dance and party their sorrows away.
However, noisy music will only do more harm than good and may be responsible for the increasing tension among its lovers.
According to the American Society of Hypertension, research shows that a simple prescription of certain kinds of music might significantly reduce high blood pressure.
If you are suffering from high blood pressure, shelf your medications for a day and try this music therapy – listen to classical, Celtic or slow reggae music 30 minutes a day to lower your blood pressure.
4. Cures Insomnia
Music Therapy is recommended for people who have difficulties sleeping. Rather than take drugs or keep tossing in bed, it is advised to listen to soothing music. It helps to calm the nerves, relieve anxiety and elevate the worries that keep you awake.
5. Music Reduces Pain
Whether it’s Adele’s Hello, or Terry G’s Akpako, the lyrics and melodies of every song can be an effective therapy for managing pain.
According to a paper in the UK-based Journal of Advanced Nursing, listening to music can reduce chronic pain from a range of painful conditions, including osteoarthritis, disc problems, menstrual pain and rheumatoid arthritis, by up to 21%.
Music is a distraction that gives the patient a sense of control. Music causes the body to release endorphins, which counteract pain.
6. Affects Breathing
Music has the power to speed up your heartbeats or slow down your breathing. A slow tempo song has a relaxing effect slowing your heart rate and breathing while faster music with an upbeat tempo speeds up your heart rate and respiration.
You can be in charge of your body, simply by choosing which songs you listen to – slow music if your want to rest your body; fast music if you want to spur yourself up.
7. Music is Used to Treat Addictions
Addiction is a painful disease that affects the entire family and circle of friends. Making the decision to enter rehab is the first step towards recovery.
Music therapy can be of great value in treating addiction – smoking, sex, drugs, alcohol, name it. It is certainly not enough by itself to help someone recover from substance abuse, but it can be a useful tool in the treatment process.
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Sobriety is an emotional roller coaster. Music (either playing it or listening to it) may help people get rid of some of their destructive emotions.
8. Prevents Suicide
Depression is one leading cause of suicide and listening to music can go a long way in managing depression. By listening to meaningful music, a suicidal person might just deduce a new meaning to life through the message of the song or just the good vibes/feeling that the song brings.
9. Treats Amnesia
Music can jar up memory and bring back a name, face, experience or feeling for someone struggling with memory loss, which is usually caused by brain damage, disease, or psychological trauma.
Some songs put you in a time machine and set you back to painful times. Hopefully, when you get there, you will remember the lessons you learned, the people you met and how they made you feel.
10. Relieves Mental Illness
Listening to music can improve the mental health of people with depression, long-term mental disorder, withdrawal from reality and other cases of mental illness.
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Play a nice song to a mad man in rage and see his reaction; he will most likely stop shouting for starters, after which he will start to meditate/dance to the song, whether he understands what is being said or not.
Now you know the power of music therapy. Listen to music more and find that inner peace and happiness you so deserve.