The topic of health and wellness extends far beyond keeping your body physically healthy. While your physical condition is important, of course, focusing on your mental wellbeing should be just as much of a priority. Have a song that brings tears to your eyes? Or maybe your daily playlist is compiled of your favorite songs to dance to. The fact is, as humans, we are moved by music and rhythm, and believe it or not, it can play a huge role in influencing the state of our mental health. The beautiful thing about music is its versatility. No matter your musical preferences, listening to your favorite tunes regularly can provide you with several mental health benefits:
Fosters Motivation and Concentration
If you enter a university library, you’re likely to see students studying with headphones on. Research suggests that when someone is listening to music while they are focused on another activity, background music can contribute to improving their performance. Music can help you stay focused on important tasks and improve your cognitive function and memory retention. Aside from helping you concentrate, music is also a fantastic motivator for physical activity. There’s a reason why athletes listen to music before a big game, and why many people use music to get through a workout or run. If you find yourself struggling to get through a workout, consider listening to your favorite upbeat song!
Reduces Stress, Anxiety, and Depression
Are you feeling down? Or maybe you’re feeling a little overworked? To put it simply, listening to music makes you happier and reduces some of the significant stressors in your life. In fact, neurophysiological research studies support that listening to music can actually help with relieving anxiety; and the chills you get when you listen to a song are proof. When you experience music-induced chills, you experience reduced activity in the areas of the brain that are associated with anxiety disorders. The same holds true for those that suffer from depressive disorders. Similar to how music impacts motivation, the type of music you’re listening to is also important to consider regarding its impact on depression and anxiety disorders. Many studies on music therapy have discussed the impact and emotional reactions to different forms and genres of music.
Calms the Brain to Manage Pain
Would you ever think that music can help manage pain? How can the sounds of rhythm influence pain management? Studies have shown that patients who experience chronic pain had a substantial reduction in their pain levels when they listened to music for just one hour a day. It all happens as a result of your body’s natural response to music and its ability to promote relaxation, rhythmic breathing, and, ultimately, the release of pain and stress. Many people who suffer from chronic pain are also dealing with anxiety and depression as a result. So, music therapy is a great way to combat these issues together.
Listening to music is a pastime that’s historically known for bringing people pure joy. But, its benefits surely exceed just a simple boost in mood!