Music & Mental Health

Music goes back in our history to our ancestors who weren’t Homo sapiens in our true form. It effects global culture and is also used very often as a means of expression. Many artists have used magical tunes in order to share their darkest times and thoughts.

I was really surprised to find out that there is such a thing as music therapy. Psychiatrists and psychologists use music and musical instruments in order to reduce the stress levels of their clients and to use them as a means of bonding. Here’s a story that would make the point clearer.

How It Helped Kyle

Kyle, a fifteen year old with a history of significant trauma was referred to a music-therapist. Initially Kyle would sit hunched with his mobile phone and found it hard to interact with his therapist. The therapist used Kyle’s mobile to listen to tunes and discuss what they meant to him. This made Kyle talk about his hopes for the future, school and his family. He slowly started writing his own raps and discussed the connections of the lyrics with his life experiences. After two years of therapy, Kyle became more optimistic and developed more understanding about the impact his actions can have on others. One year later, he was attending college.

Music Therapy

It is basically a type of therapy where the therapist draw upon the innate qualities of music to support people of all ages and at all stages of their lives. A wide range of musical styles and instruments are used and it is often improvised. In an informal setting one would think that it is only said to have positive effects but this method actually uses the power of music to heal people.

Sometimes people find bonding with other people over music much simpler than other methods. Maybe a song you like, an artist you love or a band you both follow; anything can make two people best friends quicker than any ice breaker could. People often find solace in it and its deeper tunes when everything else seems to be going wrong.

It Works

People have been found to have lower stress levels when listening to music of their own taste. Has it ever happened to you that your mind was going a bit haywire and everything seemed irritating but you found yourself humming your favourite tune to help everything make sense?

Scientifically speaking, there haven’t been many studies that look into the effect of music of a person’s choice on their own mindset but there have been various other studies. Some studies came to the conclusion that it has a similar effect to the one of drugs in the neural rewarding system.

I always used to think that people who would suggest music as a therapeutic or stress reliever were mistaken. Now I have evidence that I was wrong before. Music does work and it has been shown to have positive effects. It always finds a way to resonate with the thoughts in our mind.

References

Hohmann, L., Bradt, J., Stegemann, T., & Koelsch, S. (2017). Effects of music therapy and music-based interventions in the treatment of substance use disorders: A systematic review. PloS one12(11), e0187363.

Music therapy and mental health – making positive, safe connections, British Association For Music Therapy

50 Replies to “Music & Mental Health”

  1. Music has the healing effects. It calm down our mind, gives peace and fills the environment with positivity.
    #MothersGurukulreads
    #MyFriendAlexa

  2. I could relate well with you post. Since I was a depressed person once who attended suicide. And I went for mental counselling in which music therapy was one part. Yes, music helped me to rebuild me.

    1. I am so glad that you rebuilt yourself. Would you like to share your story with us? It could inspire someone in need as well.

  3. Music is everywhere and depending upon why you listen to what you are listening to, can determine the reasoning for why you’re selecting the choices you make daily or a lifetime. Let the music begin. I’m mean continue.
    I enjoy the message for the article. What was your hope in having others read this blog?

    1. Those are beautiful words. In this article, I was trying to tell people how even the simplest of things could help a depressed person fight their demons. Music while easily found, could mean so much to some people.

    2. was trying to tell people how even the simplest of things could help a depressed person fight their demons. Music while easily found, could mean so much to some people.

  4. As a musician with Bipolar and PTSD, ive played around the country and on stages in pubs all the way to festival stages. I have worked with big acts and small acts. The problem i have is if my manic or depression kicks into full swing it can be detrimental to everything i do. I believe strongly that music is a healer, but drugs don’t work with creativity most of the time and if im in self destruct mode it sends me reeling, cancelling gigs and more. Your post is interesting non the less

    1. Thank you! I would really like to hear more from you on your experiences. Would you like to share that on my blog?

      1. Sure. So basically I want to know about when you got to know you had those disorders and how you and your near ones reacted to it. Also the effect music has had on your life since then. If any. Something along these lines.

      2. I received it DG. Your story is really inspiring. You don’t need to just get on with it in my opinion but ultimately it is your choice. I have your story scheduled for the last week of September.

  5. music is a complete medicine ,it relives stress and gives energy to face upcoming tasks…i am a true music lover and really enjoyed reading this. #DelhibloggerReads #MyFriendAlexa

  6. Nothing like some good music to dissolve the stress away! I have found that I can alter my mood with different songs. It’s a great way to get motivated when you need it, and also a great way to relax when you need to.

  7. Love every bit of this article. Music has been my solace for a very long time. Music has seen me through some of the roughest times in my life. Music saved me.

  8. I totally agree with this article and I loved that you used the references at the end. Music ties into therapy well, especially for me. Whenever I am stressed out, I would put my earbuds in. Not only the for the soothing beat of the music but, it was like it was relating to me and my thoughts when I couldn’t put them into words myself. It was amazing to see that it helps more people than just me.

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