Music Therapy and Stress Reduction Research
Music is a powerful stress reliever. Studies have demonstrated that listening to music can reduce stress, depression and anxiety levels; promote relaxation and help manage pain.
Music therapists utilize a range of musical methods in their sessions to meet the needs of their clients. Common techniques include improvisation, singing and playing an instrument – which can be done either individually or collectively depending on the therapist’s skillset and theoretical orientation.
Improvisation – Improvisation is the practice of creating music in-the-moment that has never been created before. This could include singing or playing an instrument as well as instrumental combinations. For those with a history of trauma or abuse, this method may be particularly beneficial.
Song lyric composition and interpretation are popular forms of music therapy for stress reduction. These methods provide the therapist with a means to express feelings, understand emotions, and help their client form new connections to themselves through song.
Language – Music therapy treatment plans emphasize the client’s capacity for verbally expressing their emotions. This may be done through song writing and sentence completion games in which the therapist uses musical instruments as tools to teach the client how to express themselves verbally.
Music therapy not only facilitates verbal self-expression, but it can also educate a client about their body’s response to stress. This can be an especially valuable skill for those suffering from mental health disorders since it helps them comprehend these responses and build healthy coping mechanisms.
Other techniques employed in music therapy for stress reduction include guided meditation, tuning fork therapy and brainwave entrainment. These can be implemented during a session or class, via video streaming or app download.
These techniques can provide a welcome distraction from other stresses and worries in your life. Your brain needs to focus on something else so it can release tension and anxiety.
Listening to relaxing music during daily tasks such as sports, work, cooking and gardening can be beneficial. Thanks to modern technology, you can easily play your favorite tunes in these settings and reap its therapeutic effects.
Music’s unique acoustic properties and effects on human physiology make it an ideal therapy for stress reduction. This is because the human ear is highly sensitive to sound, able to detect vibrations within music that are distinct from other sounds.
Steady rhythm is essential to how humans physiologically respond to music. This is because steady beats affect respiratory rhythm, heartbeat rate and systolic blood pressure.
Researchers have noted the profound effect of music on human physiology, leading them to conclude it can be an effective way to relieve stress. A systematic review of 47 studies concluded that music was a medium to strong stress-relieving agent.