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Music therapy can help people of all ages as a treatment for a surprising range of both physical and psychological problems. You probably wouldn’t think of music therapy as a treatment for developmental disabilities, Alzheimer’s disease, substance abuse issues, brain injuries, physical disabilities, or chronic illnesses, but it works! Although progress may not be visible as quickly as with some oral medicines, music therapy has been successful in treating all of these conditions. It may sounds like magic, but let me tell you why and how music therapy works.

There are many reasons why music is known for being a powerful therapeutic tool. One advantage in using music is that music appeals to people of any age. Also, music is a universal language, so everybody enjoys music regardless of one’s race, culture, or background. Musical involvement may differ, however, depending on the level of development. Young children will experience music as a sensory-motor stimulus, and can benefit from the direct experiences of making and listening to musical sounds. As the child grows older, participation in music as a social activity may become more and more frequent. In adulthood, music can be enjoyed through listening or direct participation, and as an individual or group member. Musical enjoyment can extend into the retirement years, offering a source of aesthetic and social involvement.

Once you strain your ears, you will be surprised by how much you are exposed by music in your everyday life. Catchy music on a TV commercial, smooth jazz at a coffee shop, classical music at a dentist, marching music at grocery stores… these are just a few examples. Of course, you may like some of them, and some may be just noise for you. Obviously, the music does influence and manipulate your mind and behaviors.

Music will be played to relax you, stimulate you, pace you up, or make you want to buy. Wow… now you may be starting to notice how much music has power. Professional organizations and training centers for music therapy now exist in many countries around the world, including Japan, the U.S.A., and several European countries. Many researchers have shown that music therapy is effective for physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs of children and adults with disabilities or illnesses. Music therapy is also accepted as complementary treatment of communication disorders, cognitive impairments and neurological conditions.

We, as human beings, are so lucky to recognize the power and beauty of music. No other creatures appreciate music as much as we do. Although, studies have shown that some plants grow more, some cows produce milk more, and sake may taste better with music. Why don’t you try the benefit of music therapy for your everyday life? It is beneficial, and more over, there are no negative side effects!

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