Feeling down? Try music.


Music can affect the listener in many ways. It can improve mental health and boost mood, as shown by numerous studies and pieces of evidence. Try listening to a favorite song when a negative feeling becomes too heavy to bear. It could make a world of difference.

One of the ways that music has benefited people is through music therapy. According to the American Music Therapy Association, music therapy is “the clinical & evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship.” These goals can include reducing stress while simultaneously boosting moods. The fact that there is an entire association dedicated to the ways music can help people shows just how important music is for mental health.

Additionally, music can also benefit people with anxiety, trauma, or depression because it lowers cortisol levels (PubMed Central). Cortisol is a stress hormone, and since music lowers amounts of this hormone, people feel more relaxed when they listen to music.

Relaxation works best, especially when one listens to music that they like. Humans feel more comfortable with things that they are familiar with. This means that when they listen to music that they know and love, they can feel more secure. Also, music appeared to work better than anti-anxiety medications in lowering stress levels.

Also, music appeared to work better than anti-anxiety medications in lowering stress levels.

One study involved music and surgery patients. Most of the time, anxious surgery patients are given anti-anxiety medicines to calm down. Although, in this one particular study, surgery patients listened to music rather than taking the medications. The result was extraordinary.

However, there is one caveat. Productivity and focus perks work at their very best when the music being listened to contains a minimal amount of lyrics. This is because concentration levels go down when there are added verbal distractions, in this case, lyrics. After all, people are focusing on the words being said rather than their work.

Music can help us in many ways, specifically with concentration, productivity levels, and mental well-being. Music is truly one of the most effective solutions for everyday struggles. Nevertheless, it is essential to remember that these desired results work best with familiar music that one enjoys listening to that has little to no lyrics.

Next time a big test is coming up, or to simply stop procrastinating and finish homework, try listening to some background music. It might just be the thing to get into a more positive rhythm.