Music therapy is the use of music to treat a condition, reduce symptoms, or prevent the onset of a disease or injury. Music is practiced throughout all human cultures around the globe. It has been used to influence physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being to improve quality of life. Music therapy can involve either performing or listening to music, with or without a therapist.
People use music therapy for attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), anxiety, autism, cancer, heart disease, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, memory loss, depression, mental well-being, infant development, pain, multiple sclerosis, osteoarthritis, Parkinson's disease, recovery after surgery, quality of life, schizophrenia, insomnia, cystic fibrosis, mental performance, nausea, vomiting, sedation, and ringing in the ears.
People also use music therapy for addiction, aggression, alcoholism, antisocial behavior, asthma, bipolar disorder, childbirth, a lung condition called chronic pulmonary obstructive disease (COPD), diabetes, shortness of breath, anorexia, bulimia, seizures, headaches, high blood pressure, migraine, motion sickness, muscle cramps, recovery after surgery, prevention of pregnancy complications, spinal cord injury, muscle strength, and stroke.
Natural Medicines rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
The Effectiveness ratings for Music therapy are as follows:
Possibly Effective for...
Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of music therapy for these uses.
Music therapy can work by distracting people from unpleasant feelings and stimuli, which helps to reduce anxiety and pain. It can also work as a form of communication in place of spoken therapy in some people with certain psychological illnesses.
Music therapy is LIKELY SAFE when used appropriately and when music therapy does not take the place of proven treatments. Music therapy has been used without any reports of side effects.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of music therapy during pregnancy and breast-feeding. However, there’s no reason to suspect safety concerns when used correctly.
Infants and children: Music therapy is POSSIBLY SAFE in infants and children. High levels of noise or music might stunt the growth of newborn infants. Infants should also not be overstimulated with music. Music interventions in infants should usually not last any longer than 30 minutes.
It is not known if this treatment interacts with any medicines.
Before using this treatment, talk with your health professional if you take any medications.
There are no known interactions with herbs and supplements.
There are no known interactions with foods.
The appropriate or safe use of music therapy depends on several factors such as the condition being treated or the person administering the treatment. Be sure to seek and follow relevant directions from your physician or other healthcare professional before using this treatment.
Active Music Therapy, Calming Music Therapy, Contingent Music, Dinner Music Intervention, Evocative Music, Expressive Therapy, Group Chanting and Singing, Group Drumming, Guided Imagery and Music (GIM), Improvisational Music Therapy, Individualized Music-Focused Auditory Therapy (IMAT), Instructional Music Therapy, Interactive Music Therapy, Karaoke Therapy, Live Music Therapy, Lullaby Therapy, Lyric Analysis, Mandalas, Medical Resonance Therapy Music (MRT-Music), MT, Music And Movement, Music-Assisted Progressive Muscle Relaxation, Music-Assisted Reframing, Music-Based Imagery, Music-Based Intervention, Music Exposure Therapy, Music In Therapy, Music Intervention, Music Listening Intervention, Music Stimulation, Music Therapy, Music-Reinforced Therapy, Music-Video Therapy, Musical Games, Musical Motor Feedback (MMF), Musicokinetic Therapy, Orff-Based Music Therapy, Ragas.
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