Music therapy can be therapeutic by relieving stress, altering
mood, and assisting in relaxation.
Music is something that is present daily in life because of its calming effects,
while in work, walking through the mall, in restaurants, spas, hospitals, and almost
everywhere frequented by people each day. People need a means to help decrease the
negative effects of the pressures of everyday life. Music therapy can be therapeutic
by relieving stress, altering mood, and assisting in relaxation.
- Altering mood
- Begin by finding preferred music to promote positive effects
- Maintain positive alteration in mood by practicing the use of personal
- Assist in relaxation
- Begin by searching for music that assists in relaxation
- Continue to use when needed for relaxation
Music therapy can be successful in producing positive effects.
The use of this therapy is becoming more recognized in helping to reduce the
negative effects of daily life. By introducing music therapy to daily routines the
overall attitude and outlook about life can become more optimistic and greatly
Valerie A.Vitello RN
When I listen to music I often fail to recognize the effects it
has on alleviating stress, altering my mood or helping me to relax. We all listen to
music whether it be by actually tuning in to it on the various modes available or by
the music that is present in the areas we visit or spend time at day to day. I
believe most people take the positive benefits that music can have for granted.
Listening or actually playing a musical instrument can offer positive effects and
can be of assistance in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Often during the day, we
are so busy we barely notice the sounds of music playing unless it is a song or
melody that we recognize and at that point you may find yourself humming or singing
along. When we decide to listen to music we will choose the type of music that we
are familiar with or enjoy to promote a desired effect. How often do we actually
notice that the sounds of music have affected us in any way? Do we realize that the
music we listen to passively or intentionally actually has an impact on how we feel?
Let us explore that notion in the following accounts of how music as a form of
therapy affects us on a daily basis.
“Music therapy is the use of music to gain physical and emotional healing and
The therapy can include listening to music, making music or both. Music is something
that is often included in activities of daily life because of its calming effects,
while in work, walking through the mall, in restaurants, spas, hospitals, and almost
everywhere frequented by people each day. Music has become recognized as a mode of
treatment. Schools and Colleges offer courses to obtain a degree as a Music
Therapist. There are many advantages in choosing this as a treatment for example; it
is a low cost and safe mode that can be used in a medical setting as well as in a
person’s daily life. People need a means to help decrease the negative effects that
the pressures of everyday life can have on healthy individuals as well as for those
afflicted with mental or physical illness.
Music therapy is not the same for everyone. There is not just one form. It takes
on many different forms according to individual needs or preference. Music is a
personal preference, for example if you do not like rock music it is not going
to elicit the same response as it would for someone who enjoys this genre. So
to insure that the appropriate and positive benefits as well as the intended
response is achieved it is important that proper research is conducted to find
the precise selection of music. It has been noted that emotional and physiological
changes occur when stimulative and sedative music are chosen.
Revealing that both produce feelings of joy, elated mood and energy and sedative
music produces feelings of calmness and relaxation. “Imagine any part of your life
or any aspect of our culture without music. Now put music back in. Music therapy
can be therapeutic for healthy individuals as well as for non-conventional
treatment to aid in the healing process for those suffering from physical and mental
illness by relieving stress, altering mood, and assisting in relaxation.
Music can be used as a non-conventional therapeutic treatment for physical and mental
illness to help reduce anxiety and stress due to its calming affects. Music therapy
is as old as the writings of Aristotle and Plato. In the 20th century a community of
amateur and professional musicians made visits to Veteran’s Hospitals around the
country and played for thousands of veterans suffering from the affects of both
physical and mental trauma from serving in World War I and World War II. The
patient’s exhibited notable positive responses and it became evident that music
therapy has a positive impact.
The following example helps to provide
additional evidence of the positive effects music can have on patients. It was
recorded that a young man in an Atlanta hospital that had been in a coma for 14
years had a positive response by opening his eyes to the song “Somewhere Over the
Rainbow” performed for him in his hospital room by Patti LaBelle one of his favorite
recording artists. His mother was convinced that her son felt and heard the beauty
of her voice. The response to the sound of Patti LaBelle’s voice as demonstrated by
this young man in a coma is just one example of the immense power that music and the
simple sound of a voice can stimulate and arouse the senses of a person assumed
unresponsive. This example offers proof that music therapy is and can be
incorporated into any regimen developed to assist in the healing process. This
response may have been a diversion for this young man that reduced stress and
perhaps aided him to relax and enjoy the music and voice of one of his favorite
A board certified music therapist can create a personal program in a clinical
setting to help alleviate stress and anxiety as well as assist in rehabilitation,
pain management, helps improve cognitive ability and support various other areas of
the healing process.
Music therapy is also beneficial for healthy individuals.
Stress reduction can be achieved via active music making, such as drumming. Keep in
mind music can do wonders in alleviating stress but not everyone has the same taste
is music. You have to choose music that you are comfortable with listening to,
because forcing yourself to listening to music that you do not like can cause stress
not ease it.
Music therapy offers both physical and mental benefits it has
an effect on blood pressure, temperature, heart rate and tension. Instead of the use
of traditional medicine, choosing a favorite genre of music that promotes feelings
of calmness can become a source for individuals to help relieve feelings of stress.
When you consider the stress encountered daily it becomes apparent that relieving
and eliminating it will improve many areas of your life. When we are feeling
stressed it is not easy to focus and continue on with daily life. It becomes
increasingly difficult to enjoy all the joys that life has to offer. Introducing a
favorite type of music to the activities you do each day can assist in lessening and
alleviating the negative effects that stress can have on the mind and the body.
can have a profound effect on emotions. When an individual is feeling sad or has
feelings of depression choosing a favorite song or songs that promote feelings of
happiness or joy can alter the mood to an elated state. Music provides the
soundtrack to many of life experiences. In every persons life there have been
occasions or even daily activities that have been enhanced by the choice of music
that is stimulating to that person. There have been various studies conducted to
examine the effect music has on mood.
“It has been suggested that music may be
used as a resource for creating and sustaining mood, well-being and
Music has been used for decades to enhance
the mood for every day experiences. Different genres are often selected according to
the occasion. For any event or occasion the appropriate choice of music can set the
tone of the experience. There have been various studies conducted to examine the
effect music has on mood. All have concluded that music is an integral and important
factor that is used by all cultures. The right choice of music stimulates the
senses. Let’s talk about the importance of music to enhance life experiences. Music
is an important component of weddings, funerals, parties, restaurants, movies, work,
and most areas where people dwell. Let’s discuss some examples of the types of music
that would be selected for a wedding. This selection would most likely include music
that has been written about love and relationships as well as upbeat dance music.
Basically a suitable choice of music at a wedding should generate feelings of
happiness and joy. On the other hand, at a funeral you would most likely choose
music that has a solemn tone that may provoke feelings of sadness or reflection.
Often at a funeral you may listen to music that is a tribute to the deceased like
their favorite song or a collection of music that is reminiscent.
example of the right choice of music to cause a specific response is the soundtrack
chosen for a movie. Careful consideration is taken to select the appropriate music
to enhance and stimulate a certain response for the viewer. How about the music that
is chosen at your favorite restaurant? The correct assortment of music can improve
and enhance the dining experience. For example, at an authentic Italian restaurant
you would expect to hear the sounds of Frank Sinatra and other artists that are
specific to this genre. The sounds of the right music set the mood and ultimately
become part of the experience allowing the diner to be relaxed and comfortable which
in the end creates a positive reaction. As you can see the use of music can add to
the success of any occasion or business by enhancing or contributing to its theme.
Most of us live in a fast paced “gotta get it done “as quick as possible
type of world. Daily life has become full of deadlines and often people feel that
there is not enough time in a day to get everything accomplished. So when it is time
to relax and fall asleep often it is difficult. Relaxation and sleep are important
and necessary to maintain good health and to aid in the return of good health for
those with mental and physical illness. For many years music therapy has been used
to help with relaxation and as a sleep aid. Perhaps it is the rhythm of the music or
the beat that has the calming effect on us although we may not be very conscious
about it. The selection of soothing or sedative music can help promote feelings of
calmness to assist in relaxation and also can be used as a sleep aid. This therapy
can be used in conjunction with or as an alternative to traditional medicine. The
use of music therapy is a safe choice because it has no side effects allowing it to
be a welcome choice for healthy individuals as well as those suffering with any
illness. In a healthcare setting the addition of music to the daily regimen of
traditional sleep aids is an easy, safe way to help patients to achieve appropriate
rest when in the process of healing. Another benefit of this form of therapy is the
low cost. Many people already have a collection of favorite music which includes a
selection of soothing melodies. Also the radio and computer have stations
specifically dedicated to this type of music. As you can see this is a very easy,
safe and affordable way to assist in the relaxation and sleep process.
you can see the use of music therapy incorporated into daily activities can enhance
and improve quality of life for healthy individuals as well as for those afflicted
with mental or physical illness. It can enhance and create a positive experience
when used daily or for special occasions. The positive effects of music therapy can
be achieved either actively or passively by playing a musical instrument or by
listening to a song or piece of music. The power that music has on our emotions is
real. The benefits that it can afford each one of us should not be taken for
granted. Its healing power and its effectiveness are extremely valuable. The
benefits of music therapy also include it to be a low cost, effective, safe mode of
therapy allowing it to be available to anyone. It is an extremely beneficial therapy
to facilitate feelings of well being in any area of life for the healthy and the
sick. When it used in a clinical setting it has proven to affect the ill in a
positive and therapeutic manner assisting in the healing process. The correct
selection of music can be chosen as the background of our lives can help to
stimulate feelings of calmness, happiness, joy and well being. Provoking these
feelings can be beneficial in aiding in the healing process for the sick. The
appropriate music can set the tone for life experiences.
In a clinical
setting examples of the impact as exhibited by the young man in a coma have been
given regarding the response to the sounds of music and singing and its effects on
the ill. Music is an important and necessary addition to daily life. It provides a
diversion to the stimulants in life that cause stress. It helps to decrease stress
and its negative effects it can have on health. Music is an excellent form of
non-conventional medicine. It provides a means to alter mood to a positive state and
it can assist in the relaxation process and help to guide you into a peaceful
So there is no risk taken in the choice of music therapy as
an alternative means to decrease the effects of daily living. It can be used to help
anyone who is searching for a non medicinal mode of treatment for the negative
affects daily life brings.
With a little creativity we all can achieve the
benefits of music therapy. Through careful research and the selection of a number of
our favorite songs or music combined to create a soundtrack that assists in
producing feelings of calmness, joy, relaxation and well being we all can live a
healthy well balanced existence.
Music helps in many ways. It will boost brainpower, improve memory, help socially and it teaches discipline and builds confidence. One on one private music lessons work the best.
Valerie A.Vitello RN