April 15, 2016 173
What are the positive effects of music?
Scientists found out that listening to music reduces the blood’s cortisol level, commonly called the “stress hormone”. Music therefore helps the organism to calm down, relieve stress and lower high blood pressure. Music touches all our different brain centers and encourages our reward center to produce Dopamine, the hormone which makes us feel happy and elated. It is also said to lower pain, due to the strong link between stress and pain. Participants of a research had lesser pain after a surgery when they listened to music before than patients of the control group who did not listen to music before. Those patients also needed lower dose of morphine for their pain management and a significantly lesser amount of anaesthetic.
Many athletes, professionals and amateurs rely on music as their performance booster. The impact of dopamine on the human body comes in effect here as well. It makes us feel happy and leads to a higher motivation, what leads to a performance boost and also to an improvement of memory and learning efforts. Research on musicians showed that they have an enormous strong bridge which ties their right and left side brain and enlarged neural cells, especially if they picked up their instrument at an early age. Furthermore playing an instrument is also seen to enhance happiness, but it also reduces anxiety and the protein interleukin 6, which is implicated to be a causer of heart problems and diabetes.
Where can music be applied, in terms of therapies?
Music is used in a broad variety of medical fields to help treat all kinds of diseases. Doctors and scientists used music as a part of the therapy of people who suffered from dementia and found out that it not only helps to improve mood and orientation of the patients, but also their memory abilities. They were able to remember certain instances attached to their favourite songs and music. The method of music therapy is also used in the treatment of another neurological disease. Stroke patients are treated with music to recover their speaking abilities, to improve their mood and to mitigate confusion and depression. At the same time therapists found out that patients can improve their fine-motor skills when they train their hands on a piano or a drum set.
Another area in which music therapy is used very successfully is in the treatment of autism. People who are diagnosed with autism have distinct problems in the area of speaking and general communication. Music therapy makes it possible to get access to those withdrawn children and allows them to communicate and to establish relationships with other people. In psychotherapy, music helps to break psychological barriers and allows people to articulate thoughts from their sub consciousness.
Have you ever thought that we can benefit from music in so many different ways and have you tried to use music to distract yourself from pain or to boost your performance?
by Gerrit E.
A well-travelled German, always on the run to explore the meanings of life. View all articles by Gerrit E..