World wide, people love and listen to music. It touches each and every soul. To many people in many cultures, music is an important aspect of life. But most people become shocked when they hear of the term Music therapy. It seems that this Therapy is still an alien subject to many people across the world. As the term therapy suggests, Music through Therapy is a process through which a therapist helps a client improve or maintain his or her health. Researchers in Music have noted that music has an excellent power in can expelling diseases. Therapy is used to help people suffering from conditions such as psychiatric disorders, medical problems, sensory impairments, developmental abilities and other health related ailments.
The history of music goes way back in time from the days when David played the harp to rid King Saul of an evil spirit. And as early as 400 B.C., Hippocrates, the Greek father of medicine, played music for his sick patients. In the 17th century, the scholar Robert Burton discovered that music was instrumental in healing illnesses. And in most parts of the world, especially in South America and Africa, medicine men employed chants and dances as way of healing patients. Music as we know it began during the first and second world wars. In this period, Musicians would travel to hospitals and play for soldiers suffering from various ailments as well as physical trauma.
The practical applications of music for healing are irresistible. Cutting-edge music therapy helps the autistic to rehearse their emotions and helps patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease to walk.Music uses a lot of techniques in dealing with health related ailments. The most common techniques include music improvisation, the use of pre-composed songs and receptive listening to music. One case where music therapy was used was in the healing of a thirty-five year old woman who had chest problems. This woman was lying in bed moaning in pain, but when her little boy with his drum set began playing the drums for her, she suddenly felt better. And after a few hours, the woman was able to get up and complete some chores in the house.
To those unfamiliar with music therapy, the idea of a woman being healed by a little boy playing his drum set is hilarious to say the least. But studies have shown that music positively affects a patient’s emotions since it impacts some portions of the brain. Hence that is why a lot of stroke patients respond favorably to music. In fact, recent studies that were conducted proved that out of fifty stroke patients, thirty-five patients who were exposed to music therapy fully recovered.
With all the benefits that music therapy has, it is no surprise that this field is growing rapidly in popularity. Many hospitals now are turning towards music as the cheapest tool for healing and relieving pain in patients. And more countries are now recruiting experienced music composers, producers and singers into the field of music therapy. In United States, for instance, those who can qualify for positions as music therapists are required to have proficiency in guitar, piano, reading and music theory. It is proven belief that everyone can respond to music.
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