The Role of Music in Patient Therapy

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Topic: Health & Medicine
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Different types of art therapy are actively used today in the health care system as effective methods to influence the patient’s psychological and physical state. Music is also an important tool to contribute to the patient’s successful treatment. Nowadays, music is used in the field of health care as the main component of the specific music therapy or as the additional method to relieve patient’s sufferings and to change the person’s mood in psychotherapy and palliative treatment.

That is why it is possible to speak about various approaches which are used by physicians and therapists to improve the patient’s state. In spite of the fact that the procedures of listening to music or playing different instruments are used as the therapeutic methods during a long period of time, music therapy as the independent type of therapy and the focus on music as the measure to contribute to the palliative treatment are rather new approaches to using the benefits of the musical harmony and its positive effects of the person’s physical and psychological state.

The treatment or therapy based on the use of music as the main tool can be realized with references to such opposite approaches as the process of listening to music and as the process of playing instruments to produce different styles of music. Furthermore, these two approaches are also associated with the range of other categories and types of treatment and therapies which are selected for each patient individually (Ansdell 19). Thus, if the positive impact of live music on the patient’s state is the general and well-known idea, music therapies should be performed with references to the individual problems of the patient in order to choose the most effective variant to overcome problems and relieve sufferings.

Music as the part of the palliative treatment or any other treatment strategy is usually used to alleviate the patient’s pain, to change the mood for better, and to contribute to the physical rehabilitation. In this case, the process of listening to recorded or live music is often chosen as the perfect measure to promote the persons’ wellbeing. While listening to different kinds of music and to different songs, patients can feel various emotions which depend on the music style or types of melodies used. As a result, the patients’ emotions can be regulated with the help of the music patterns, and this procedure contributes to the persons’ physical and emotional state (Ansdell 38). While being associated with physical pain, music can help patients cope with their everyday sufferings.

Furthermore, listening to different songs and compositions, patients ruled by the monitors and counselors can reflect on the songs’ imagery, discuss the songs’ lyrics, and make conclusions about their current state. However, it is important to pay attention to the fact that the power of music, especially live music, is significant, and it is necessary to choose the music for treatment and therapy properly in order to avoid possible negative effects on the people’s state because they can be as significant as positive ones (Hilliard 174). From this point, the role of music is in patients’ increased moods and in their increased powers to fight the disease.

Music therapy is often base on composing or producing melodies instead of listening to them because this method is even more effective to change the patient’s state and to help in overcoming the traumatic events, stress, and remember negative experiences. The process of composing music and the process of playing instruments are powerful methods to assist the patient in expressing his or her negative and positive emotions openly. As a result, many therapists refer to the musical improvisation as the basic method to look into the patient’s inner world in order to help in overcoming the psychological and physical problems (Ansdell 98). To make the therapy successful, therapists focus on selecting the instruments for each patient because it is necessary to pay attention to the persons’ desires to play this or that instrument which are often related to their hidden inclinations.

Thus, the individual approach is music therapy often guarantees the positive results because the patient receives the opportunity to realize his desires and to express his or her strong emotions and feelings in the form of music which serves as the tool to harmonize the person’s state and visions (Clements-Cortes 255). It is also important to note that music is often more effective than verbal communication when patients are children who are inclined to express their thoughts with the help of the developed imagery.

Music plays an important role in health care in general and in the therapy in particular because music as medicine can help many patients without references to their age or culture. Music as the part of the traditional treatment and music therapy are effective approaches to manage the patients’ stress, to cope with multiple psychological problems, to provide the necessary relief for the patients who suffer from pain, to provide the opportunities express feelings openly, and to stimulate patients’ rehabilitation. Music can improve the quality of the people’s life without references to their state or severity of the illness. That is why the role of music in therapy and treatment is difficult to be overestimated.

Works Cited

Ansdell, Gary, and Mercedes Pavlicevic. Community Music Therapy. USA: Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2004. Print.

Clements-Cortes, Amy. “The Use of Music in Facilitating Emotional Expression in the Terminally Ill”. American Journal of Hospice & Palliative Medicine 21.4 (2004): 255-260. Print.

Hilliard, Russell. “Music Therapy in Hospice and Palliative Care: A Review of the Empirical Data”. EvidenceBased Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2.2 (2005): 173-178. Print.