Music can work wonders for the mind and body. When music is used to treat patients clinically, it is known as music therapy. It includes listening to music and playing musical instruments. Besides, one can even sing music to get the benefits of music therapy.
Music therapy may take place at hospitals, doctors’ offices, patients’ residences, nursing homes, etc. Many schools, juvenile detention centers, and offices now make use of it to get the benefits of music therapy. Moreover, patients can take the therapy session during the day time or when they are in a hospital or the above-mentioned places.
Before The Session
A music therapist assesses you physically and mentally before delivering the therapy. They generally talk about the patient’s cognitive skills, social skills, communication skills, trauma history or triggers, motor skills, etc. This process helps them to know your strengths and weaknesses. Also, learning about your goals will help them to design the music therapy course suitable for you as per your needs. There are many other factors that work here. These are one’s music preferences, physical and mental abilities, and age.
Music Therapy sessions may be one-to-one or group sessions. One can use various percussion instruments to express emotions. The music therapist also helps the person by playing her or his own music. Thus, both of them create music together to form a musical bond between them. Also, the session may consist of musical games and pre-composed numbers. The whole idea is to express different types of emotions through improvised music with the help of movement, language, and voice.
In some intense sessions, patients may be encouraged to dance or clap their hands. During a session, the music therapist may talk to the person to know how she or he is feeling. The therapist tries to help the patient to handle negative feelings or stress. For example, if a patient is feeling stressed, the therapist may advise her or him to focus on breathing and play or sing music. Asking the patient to write a motivational song or a song about how the patient feels may make help release stress.
The music therapist will check if you have been able to meet your goals and whether the objective was achieved. Based on that he or she will decide whether you need more sessions.
Music reduces anxiety levels as it lowers blood pressure and heart rate. The overall good feeling of listening to music or playing an instrument makes a person stress-free and calm. Thus, it can help in reducing stress levels in a person. Music helps to minimize the release of adrenaline and cortisol. Adrenaline is released into the blood when a person experiences any kind of stress. Cortisol hormone plays a major role in increasing stress levels in humans. Reducing both these hormones controls the stress level.
Music helps in improving communication skills. Also, it helps to improve language skills and body movements. Group sessions encourage people to talk with one another and sing or play music together. So, enhancing social skills is one of the many benefits of music therapy for autism. Besides, older people can fulfill their social needs in a group music session.
One of the benefits of music therapy for mental health is that it helps to get rid of depression. When a person listens to music or sings a song, it releases dopamine and endorphins. Dopamine plays a major role in making us feel pleasure and motivated. Endorphins are natural painkillers. They also elevate one’s mood. Overall, it enhances our overall sense of well-being in us. Thus, one of the best benefits of music therapy is that it eliminates depression.
Music therapy helps in lowering blood pressure and heart rate. It also relaxes one’s muscles. Since music helps in pain management, the patient’s treatment for any disease or disorder can be expedited with the help of music therapy sessions. Moreover, it also relaxes muscles and slows the breathing process. A person tends to feel relaxed and sleep well. Also, it can help cancer patients going through Chemotherapy feel less anxious during their treatment. Thus, it helps in enhancing immunity and plays a significant role in our overall physical health.
Music therapy encourages social interactions. Also, it helps people to express their emotions or feelings positively. Thus, it promotes free and effective communication. Besides, it reduces the feeling of anxiety or agitation. So, one cannot deny the benefits of music therapy for dementia or Alzheimer’s patients. Besides, music therapy can help children who struggle to remember what they have learned.
The benefits of music therapy for mental health and physical health can help create a better version of ourselves. With reduced stress and depression, we start believing in ourselves. Our improved health also makes us more energetic and cope us with the different challenges of our daily life. Our improved memory helps us perform well academically and professionally. Thus, music therapy boosts our self-esteem and makes us more confident about ourselves. All in all, the miraculous benefits of music therapy make our life better and easier to live.