How Music Can Help Improve Your Psychological Health
- Written by Hyne Site
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We all love listening to music, don’t we? We have all grown from Elton John in the 80s to John Mayer today. From radio FMs to apple music today. Music has been a part of our lifestyle for ages. It is a form of pleasure and entertainment. Today, we can’t go anywhere without music. I per se have a workout playlist, travel playlist, after work playlist, work playlist, meditating playlist, and even sleep playlist.
It is a source of contentment, but it is not limited to it. Music has proven to provide a wide range of psychological benefits. Emotional health is something that we often ignore. We think of getting great dogs for protection, but when it comes to getting emotional support, we usually take a step back.
Do you know mental disorders affect 22% of Americans every year? Yes. These daunting figures reflect that we need to show more concern towards the issue and work upon it. Music therapy is one preventive measure that can help provide several psychological benefits.
Music helps manage and reduce your stress. We have often heard that music can be an effective way to cope with stress. Fortunately, this is true and even backed up by research. In a study in 2013, volunteers were exposed to stressor then divided into three groups. One listened to relaxing music, one to the sound of rippling water, and the rest had no auditory stimulation. The results reflected that people who were listening to music showed the most improvement. It suggested that music had an impact on the autonomic nervous system, thereby reducing stress. So, next time when you come back home after work, tune in to some music and relax.
I am not kidding! Listening to songs actually helps in improving your memory. Probably why many students prefer listening to music while studying. Although many feel that it isn’t such a good idea and it only adds to the distraction. So, let’s see what the research suggests.
There have been several studies that suggest that listening to music helps improve memory, but that depends on a variety of factors like the type of music, how musically trained the listener is, and if the listener enjoys that music. A study also found that people learning a new language were able to learn it more effectively by singing new words and phrases.
Surprised? Yes, music might just be the weight-reducing tool you were looking for. If you can’t fit into your favorite jeans, you may try to tune in some mellow music. This could just be the solution you are looking for.
Research suggests that lighting and music create a more relaxing setting, which makes you eat less. In one such study, people eating at a low lit restaurant playing soft music consumed 18% less food than those eating at other restaurants. Since they were comfortable, the participants consumed food more slowly and ate less. Try putting this into practice at your house.
How can music help reduce physical pain? Research suggests that music can actually be beneficial in the management of pain. A study on fibromyalgia patients found that patients that listened to music for one hour a day showed more reduction in pain than those who weren’t exposed to any music. Another study in 2015 found that patients who listened to music after, during, or before surgery experienced less anxiety and pain than others.
Millions of Americans suffer from sleeping disorders and insomnia. While there are several ways of treating these conditions, music can prove to be very useful. This is not me suggesting this, but what the studies and research say. A study on college students found that volunteers who listened to music showed significantly better sleep quality than those listening to an audiobook or had no auditory stimulation. So, if you have trouble sleeping or suffer from insomnia, listening to some music might be useful.
Music entertains and inspires. But it can also be instrumental in providing psychological benefits. Instead of considering music as just a form of entertainment, consider its mental health benefits, which can help improve your well being. Or you can show this to your mother and guilt-trip her into making her buy you an iPod.