Do you ever feel better after listening to music? That uplifted or relaxed feeling may be a footnote for you but it has huge potential in the world of health and wellness. Today we’re exploring the healing power of music.
Music has been used for therapeutic purposes for centuries and now science is considering how it can supplement and sometimes replace more traditional healing methods in many significant areas in the medical field. According to research, music can be energizing enough to stimulate weight loss and reduce risk of heart conditions, and it can be calming enough to improve sleep and psychiatric conditions. The healing power of music has a lot of potential!
On a physical level, music has shown amazing benefits for the body. Music naturally slows the heart rate, lowers blood pressure and may reduce cholesterol levels, all of which is good for the cardiovascular system and can combat the effect of stress on the body. Within a matter of minutes, music can reduce pain in people suffering from chronic conditions. Additionally music can calm the gastrointestinal system for easier digestion. And music can even boost the immune system and the metabolism to help keep body defenses in check and to support weight loss and recovery after workouts.
Mentally and emotionally, music can be a major uplifting factor as well. One study showed that the brain syncs to the beat of music, which can help calm the body as if it were entering a meditative state. That’s why the right music helps induce sleep, even for insomniacs. Mental health professionals find music helpful in treating schizophrenia, anxiety and depression because music reduces cortisol and often has a positive, optimistic message. Music also builds a sense of community and participation that just makes people feel good.
Even preemies benefit from music. A study concluded that premature babies who listened to music took in more nutrients, had better respiration and oxygenation, gained more weight and ultimately were in better position to thrive than babies who did not. That’s intense healing for the tiniest humans!
Music sets a mood, reminds us of places and times past, creates emotional imagery and even provokes social movements. The healing power of music is pretty incredible. Those beats that cheer you up or lull you to sleep may be the next big wave in improving health and wellness.
Sources: Women’s Health, The Huffington Post, and Psychology Today