By Vanessa Gonzalez
Music has been heavily ingrained in various cultures throughout history. So, it's no surprise that there is a therapeutic approach that uses music to improve mental health. There are a wide variety of approaches to music therapy, and all can overall help improve one's quality of life.
How is Music Used?
· Listening to music
· Discussing songs and music
· Dancing to music
· Singing songs
· Playing an instrument
· Making songs/music
Not a musical bone in your body? No problem! The best part of music therapy is that you do not need to be musically inclined to benefit from it.
What Can Music Therapy Be Used For?
Many people could benefit from music therapy. Some of those who may find it helpful are those who are experiencing the following:
· Autism Spectrum Disorder
· Alzheimer's Disease or other memory disorders
· Pain Management
· Pediatric Care
· Substance Use conditions
· Behavioral Issues in children and teens
· Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
· Verbal and nonverbal communication issues
· Trouble with movement or coordination
How is Music Therapy Conducted?
First, the trained therapist will identify clear goals with the client. Then, based on what you and your therapist decide is the goal of treatment, the therapist will provide the client with various types of music genres. You may be asked to create your own music, dance, sing, or play an instrument, depending on what's most beneficial for treatment.
You may be asked to improvise. Or you may be given an instruction such as to play the instrument very loudly or softly. The therapist might ask the client if the music provokes a certain feeling, memory, or thought. The purpose of the music is to be used as a tool for communication and reflection for the client.
Music therapy can be conducted in individual counseling or a group setting. It is suitable for any age range and can be highly personalized to the client. Music therapy is an evidenced-based approach utilized by a credentialed therapist. The goal is to help those with a mental illness in ways that words may not be able to do alone.
Anxiety and depression therapy available at Juno Counseling and Wellness, serving Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter, and Palm Beach County, Florida.