Music has been a part of people’s everyday lives for so long. It even evolved in a lot of different ways, then again, not everyone knows how much it actually affects the human mind and body. It doesn’t just make us sing along when we hear some of our favorite songs, it doesn’t just make us dance and groove, but it also has amazing scientific and medical effects. According to neuroscientist and author of This Is Your Brain on Music, Dr. Daniel J. Levitin, when people try to understand what exactly is the meaning of music and where it actually came from, people could have a better understanding of how it affects their motive, desires, memories, fears, and even communication.
“Is music listening more along the lines of eating when you’re hungry, and thus satisfying an urge? Or is it more like seeing a beautiful sunset or getting a back rub which triggers the sensory pleasure systems of the brain?” Levitin asks. Scientists have studied how the human brain could actually work when listening to music and how it affects the body, here are a couple of things that they have found.
CASUALLY SINGING COULD HELP THE MIND
Not everyone has an amazing singing voice, but almost everyone simply loves to either hum or sing even if they’re out of key. Turns out, that singing in the shower or simply singing whatever you may be doing, is actually good for the body. According to Dr. Jerry Saliman from JWeekly, singing has amazing effects, especially for the elderly. Studies show that people who sing for fun can actually improve the brain function, especially for people who are suffering from different brain conditions like Parkinson’s disease and aphasia. Dr. Sailman also mentioned that singing was discovered to have good effects on improving the respiration health, especially for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
MUSIC HAVE POSITIVE MEDICINAL EFFECTS
During the ancient times, music has been a part of the healing rituals all over the world, and scientists explain that is not just for the sake of the beliefs, but for healing properties as well. One of the greatest philosophers in history, Plato, suggested that music has the power to treat anxiety, and that is according to the research of Dawn Kent, from Harvard University entitled, The Effects of Music on the Human Body and Mind. “Physiologically, music has a distinct effect on many biological processes, it inhibits the occurrence of fatigue, as well as changes the pulse and respiration rates, external blood pressure levels, and psychogalvanic effect”, Kent stated. A theoretical study called the ‘Mozart Effect’ found that the music actually decreased epilepsy in patients.
SAD MUSIC AFFECTS THE EMOTIONS
People would normally think that sad and sappy songs could actually trigger their emotions, but does it really? A study was conducted and published by Frontiers of Psychology and it was discovered that music may not really be the reasons why you break down into tears. The findings suggest that there is indeed an emotional response, but it could be broken down into two, which are the perceived emotions and the felt emotion. A study was conducted and it was revealed that sad music is perceived to be more tragic, but then the actual experiences could simply be less tragic, but the sad music triggers it.
MUSIC COULD ENHANCE BRAIN ACTIVITY
According to a study, learning anything that has to do with music such as memorizing the lyrics, writing a song, playing an instrument, could actually encourage the brain to develop nonverbal reasoning. Dr. Gottfried Schlaug said that when people make music, it normally engages in the different parts of their brain, that is why it is also an option to pursue music making as a treatment for neurological disorders.
MUSIC CAN HELP YOU BE ACTIVE
Working out and making sure that your body gets the proper amount of exercise every single day is very important. There are a lot of people who are a little too lazy to get moving, but according to a study called ‘Let’s Get Physical: The Psychology of Effective Workout Music’, people who exercise along with music, use about 7% less oxygen than those who don’t.
A song’s beats per minute also have an effect on the body’s motivation to get going. One of the most popular music streaming apps today, Spotify, even introduced a special feature called Spotify Running, wherein songs would track the runner’s pace and it would play certain songs that would match your pace.
Who doesn’t like listening to music? Almost everyone can access to it especially with all the newest gadgets and apps wherein you could basically listen to music wherever you may be. It is always ideal to take advantage of all the benefits music could bring to the mind and body.