Many studies conducted by neuroscientists have proven that music heightens positive emotions. Music stimulates reward centers in the brain, which produces more dopamine, the natural "feel-good" drug.
In fact, music affects almost every part of the brain, leaving no center untouched. This means music can have an effect on more than just mood. Researchers now know that music can help improve both physical and mental well-being, sometimes having a greater impact on health than medication alone.
Below is a list of unexpected ways music can positively influence your life, health, and overall well-being.
Stress and Anxiety Reduction: Stress and anxiety can cause an increase in heart rate and blood pressure. A study has proven that the influence of music can prevent these anxiety-induced symptoms by having a calming effect.
For example, a recent study of premature babies that were sung lullabies by their parents displayed a drastic increase in functioning compared to the other children. Also, stress was reduced in the parents who performed and sang the lullabies for their babies.
Decreases Pain: Although scientists are still unsure as to how and why music reduces pain, it is believed that the increased dopamine release may be a contributing factor. Because stress and pain are closely linked, stress reduction via music may also explain why people also feel a decrease in pain.
Improves Immune Function: Researches looked at the effects music has on IgA levels within the body. IgA is an antibody that fights off diseases for the immune system. In this study, IgA levels were tested before and after a person was exposed to music. The individuals who were exposed to music produced higher levels of IgA than any other conditions. This suggests exposure to music can improve immunity.
Assists in Memory: The enjoyment of music results in dopamine release. This release has been tied to motivation, learning, and memory. A study involving recovering stroke victims proved that patients exposed to music daily improved their verbal memory and were less depressed and confused than other patients who were not exposed to music during recovery.
Increases Exercise Productivity: Study results showed that upbeat music drastically increased the length of time participants were able to work out. Another studies measurements proved that individuals who listened to upbeat music while exercising used oxygen more efficiently, therefore tiring less quickly.
Neuroscientists and researchers believe that music has the power to not only capture a listener's attention and lift spirits, but to also generate emotion, regulate mood, and evoke memories. This in return can increase work output!
Therefore, if music is your passion, you should consider a career in this beneficial livelihood. The Atlanta Institute of Music and Media strives to turn gifted music students into professional musicians. Call us today or click on the link below for more information!