Music Therapy essay
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In the ever increasing competitive world, there is need for excellence in all areas of life. One needs to survive to be able to cope up with daily endeavors. In the event of struggling to be the best and have the best the world can offer, we often flex ourselves to extremes, sometimes even beyond our natural capacities. As a result, we tend to develop stress-related disorders. In situations when the stress ends in a short period of time then we are medically fine, but if the stressful atmosphere or pressure prevails for a period of time with no sign of ending, such as in education, a demanding job, or challenging profession, then high stress levels begin to manifest and take control of our health. Stress often manifests itself in the form of headaches, hair loss, increased or decreased appetite, nail biting, blood pressure, and gastric problems. In addition, stress may manifest in form of dryness of mouth, constipation, cold hands, anger, depression, and low self-esteem. Stress can be managed in different ways by the physicians. The common therapy, which is advised by physicians, is to listen to music. Music plays an integral part in managing stress and it is crucial in alleviating stress, because it acts on different parts of the body.
Listening to music alleviates stress wonderfully, putting into account that people have different tastes in music. To control stress levels, people need to listen to music that they feel comfortable; this is because forcing oneself to relax with a particular music you don’t like may in turn create stress and not reduce it. Music is an important mood changer and it eases stress by working on many levels at once. From time immemorial, music has been a great healer, for example, King Saul needed music to help him ease his depression and, thus, made David to play his harp for him (Podolsky 150). Currently, there is growing field of healthcare that provides this specialty, known as music therapy.
Researchers say that the calming effect from music is in its rhythm. Man may not be conscious about the beats, but they are the one responsible for the calming effect (Jewell 78). This calming effect is said to have originated way back when we were developing in our mother’s wombs. We were able to listen to the mother’s heartbeat to calm us when we were stressed. At later stages in life, babies, just like mature humans, are able to respond to soothing music. Scholars say that this may be so because we tend to associate music with safe, protective, and relaxing environment that was provided to us by our mother when we were in the womb (Jewell 78).
Music is one of the most soothing instruments available because of its profound effect on the body and psyche. People, who practice music therapy, find it beneficial to help children with ADD and patients with cancer. Hospitals have also started using music to help ease pain in patients, ease muscle tension, help ward off depression, promote movement, and calm patients.
The following are effects of music that help to explain the effectiveness of the therapy.
Music is crucial in alleviating stress because it acts on different parts of the body. For example, it acts on brain waves where research has shown that music made up of strong beats stimulates brain waves. The brainwaves are brought up to reverberate in unison with the beats from the music. The beats, therefore, bring about sharp concentration and more attentive thinking to the listener (Podolsky 156). The beats slows tempo in the brain, thus promoting calm. Research has found that change in brainwave activity, as it is stimulated by musical beats, helps the brain to shift speed easily as recommended. Music, therefore, brings about a lasting benefit to alleviate stress even after we have stopped listening to the music.
Breathing and Heart Rate
Introduction of music allows for other bodily changes and functions. Breathing and heart rate are among the bodily changes that are affected by music. Music affects breathing rate and heart beat rate by significantly reducing them to optimum for the body to activate relaxation response that helps in calming an individual. This gives the reason why music as a therapy can be used to prevent damaging effects of stress, and thus promoting good health and relaxation (Patey 67). It in turn helps to improve a person’s cognitive, psychological, and social function especially when one knows the lyrics. For an effective reduction of breathing and heart rate, most musical beats bring about pleasant memories that make a difference between withdrawal and awareness.
State of Mind
Music will also bring a positive state of mind by helping to keep us out of depression and anxiety. The resultant calm state of mind will help prevent stress responses from causing disorders in our body. This calm effect keeps optimum creativity and hopefulness levels high and allows for other benefits. Over the years there have been a growing number of people studying issues and connections between psychology and environment. The psychology of conservatism, on the other hand, has grown to a level that it is seeking to understand human behavior in relation to their environment (Podolsky 170). It seeks ways, in which it can encourage behavior that promotes sustainability at work. Application of psychological theories and principles of communal and organizational practices will encourage activities aimed at increasing the output of workers. Music lifts us from the frozen mental habits by allowing the state of mind to move in ways that the ordinarily cannot. It has been found that when music stops, people tend to go back to the old self again to be eaten up by stress.
Music and Environment
Constant sound is a situation where workers work in an environment that has background music. The music runs non-stop when the workers are working. Random sound, on the other hand, includes a situation where sound is produced at a random interval. If it is music, the music runs in the air and stops. It does not follow a given pattern, nor does it run concurrently (Jewell 90). No sound environment is where workers have to work without any background music. Independent variable in this case is music and dependent variable is workers’ output.
In an organization, constant music flow often disrupts workers’ productivity because it absorbs their attention. Workers need random music that entertains them and encourages them to perform diligently. The alternate hypothesis is that workers need constant music flow for entertainment and, as a result, work output will be high. It is not absolute that most workers work best when they don’t focus their attention. Alternatively, other workers work best when they are constantly entertained by non-stop music. Data would be measured in time against the volume of the output. The most appropriate is the test because it will help in comparing two paired groups. The degree of freedom for the problem situation is the time needed for rest before workers are recalled back to work. The research will be conducted through the application of psychological theories and principles to communal and organizational practices.
Finally, music has also been found to bring about many benefits, such as busting immunity, lowering blood pressure, and easing muscle tension. Many benefits of music and its profound effect have made it a tool to maintain our health. Calming effect of music originates from its rhythm.