Music can, according to Canadian researchers, be anxiety-reducing!
Scientists have performed studies in which they have undergone 400 studies of music’s effects to give an overall picture of how music may have health-promoting effects on brain chemistry. The results were published in the report “The Neurochemistry of Music”. The evidence is still weak or indirectly, but it seems that the material supports the assertion that the neurochemical changes in the brain indicates that music has influence on health.
Listening to music at low speed and pitch reduces stress and anxiety in patients undergoing major medical interventions, patients at the dentist and patients with heart diseases – not to mention healthy people.
Stimulating music increases the heart rate, while quiet music lowers it. Slow music and musical breaks are associated with a decrease in heart rate, respiration and blood pressure. In many of the studies, researchers also found that the level of the stress hormone cortisol were decreased when the test persons listened to music. In addition, the music help to reduce stress, protect against disease and cope with pain as the music boosts processes in the cerebral cortex which in turn regulates heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature and muscle tension.
Music will also start chemical reactions in the body that produce feelings of pleasure, well-being and euphoria. The hormone dopamine is also released when listening to music.
Scientists believe that music can be used in place of benzodiazepines, among other uses associated with anxiety before major surgery. They recognize, however, that more research is required to confirm the final judgment on music as health promotion.