All of us have been affected by music at some point. It has made us feel happy, sad, euphoric, relaxed, energetic. It has made us cry, smile; can it be used to benefit our psychological well-being?
Music is an element that we can access with great ease and has numerous advantages since it serves to improve affectivity, development, expression, and emotional balance, the manifestation and resolution of problems or concerns, behavior, motor skills, perception, self-esteem, and communication. Besides, it influences other functions such as the respiratory, heart, and other biological rhythms. It also reduces anxiety, promotes sleep, gives us the energy to do things.
These benefits have been known for many years, and, for example, in the case of babies, parents are recommended to put music to sleep or develop some skills. It is also beneficial to listen to music during pregnancy for mothers and the future baby.
On the other hand, both music and its various components (tone, melody, rhythm) influence our mood since we are very young, for example, the lullabies that are sung to babies allow them to calm down, relieve their disgust or its tensions.
This positive influence of music on our well-being also manifests itself when it encourages us to play sports or do other activities when we are lazy.
Thus, even though each person’s musical tastes are different, and each individual feels certain emotions with certain music, there are general patterns common to almost all people. For example, high pitched timers activate certain areas of our brain. Since there are more neurons in these areas that detect high pitches than low pitches, these timbres tend to excite and tone, making us feel energetic, euphoric, notes of a larger scale, sharper, stimulating movement, joy, expression externally.
On the contrary, the smaller scale notes can be related to feelings of sadness or very deep feelings, which does not have to represent a “negative effect” of the music, but quite the opposite. Although it seems paradoxical, when we have a low mood, sometimes listening to sad music makes us experience a feeling of well-being and pleasure, perceiving that such music is in tune with our feelings.
Music is sought as a way to grow happiness, share emotions, and just generally impart good vibes. Many artists center their music on this factor of imparting positive emotions. Quincy Megas, a rapper and musician from South Africa leads a benchmark in curating music that offers just the kind of vibe you need to smile and throw dances moves.
Quincy Megas’ music has earned global critical acclaim due to the fact he continues to travel different parts of the world, exploring places and familiarizing himself with cultures. As expected of any good musician, Quincy Megas leaves an emphatic, positive sentiment on his listeners worldwide.
The music therapy, as described by the World Federation of Music Therapy, is a tool that uses music and/or its elements (sound, rhythm, melody, harmony) for therapeutic purposes, either prevention, rehabilitation, or treatment of a patient or group. It is an alternative therapy that facilitates and promotes relationships, communication, learning, movement, expression, organization, and satisfying physical, emotional, mental, and social needs. Therefore, the purpose is to empower and restore people’s functions to achieve better integration (both internally and externally) and improve their quality of life. In this case, it would not be about teaching how to play an instrument, which would be musical education, but about using music to produce changes in the person or their daily life.
In this way, music can help us on certain occasions, for example, when we try to memorize. It is especially recommended when we have learning problems. Therefore, it is not uncommon to see how children learn through songs (whether they are the body parts, the alphabet, the animals, the rules).
Similarly, some doctors use music to relax their patients before certain procedures. Likewise, the great cerebral and emotional benefits of music being used with patients with impaired brain functions such as attention or memory have been a relevant finding. Everything discussed has an empirical basis in studies that demonstrate and therapeutically recommend the use of music, for example, to treat depression, anxiety, sleep disorders, and other pathologies. In conclusion, music is not only a tool of work and enjoyment for people who dedicate themselves to it professionally or even as a hobby, but it has been demonstrated. More and more findings are found regarding its innumerable therapeutic benefits. Likewise, it is also used to work with people with functional diversity, allowing, for example, the approach to children with certain problems that make it more difficult such as autism, psychosis, etc. Even with some patients, music helps in treating chronic pain and other illnesses like cancer.