Mental health treatment programs can come in a wide variety of forms. For some, medication is the most helpful approach, while others consider individual therapy the most helpful. One of the most innovative approaches to mental health treatment is music therapy. If you or a loved one is struggling with mental health, you may want to consider the health benefits of a music therapy program at Bonfire Behavioral Health.
Our team provides an array of mental health treatment programs, including our music therapy program. Learn more about how we can help you or someone you care about enhance their mental health by calling Blueprint Recovery Center at 603.617.4815 or filling out our online contact form.
Understanding Music Therapy
Music can be considered one of the most important aspects of our daily lives and cultures. Among other things, music can represent feelings, places, and memories. We use music for entertainment, to relax, and even as background noise to support ourselves throughout other activities. Music can also motivate people to reach certain goals or encourage them to do something challenging, such as exercise. Music affects so many people differently, making it possible to be used as a therapy technique.
The health benefits of music therapy are plentiful. One example is the bond that a person can form with music that affects their emotions. These emotions can be positive, negative, and even neutral. For some, music can be a way to feel energetic, whereas others may feel emotional connections to the lyrics. Music can be therapeutic, which is why music therapy for mental health works so well.
Music Therapy for Mental Health
A vast amount of research further establishes the benefits of music therapy for mental health. Music therapy can be used for various mental health conditions such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), schizophrenia, and more. Music can be a vessel for processing emotions, grief, and trauma. It can also be used as a calming agent for conditions such as anxiety.
In music therapy, there are four significant interventions involved:
- Lyric analysis – Lyric analysis allows the patient to process emotions, thoughts, and experiences without speaking directly about topics that may be difficult to discuss for some. Someone undergoing music therapy is encouraged to offer their input on specific lyrics, alternative lyrics, and themes from the lyrics that can apply to their life and treatment.
- Improvisation – Playing instruments encourages patients to express emotions, socialize with other patients, and explore various therapeutic themes. One example is how a group could create a rainstorm via percussive instruments and rainsticks. A counselor can encourage the group to examine the highs and lows of the storm and relate them to their own situations and feelings. Opportunities such as improv music playing allow patients to further discuss their feelings.
- Active music listening – Music can operate as a mood regulator. A song has rhythmic aspects that engage the neocortex of a person’s brain, reducing impulsivity and calming them. Outside of music therapy, people often use music to express or change their moods. Matching music to somebody’s mood can be extremely beneficial. However, it can also place them in a depressive, angry, or anxious state. Music therapists can alter mood states by playing music to match the current mood and then slowly shift to a more positive or calm state.
- Songwriting – Songwriting allows patients to express themselves in positive and rewarding ways. The process of writing down your emotions and choosing specific instrumentals to express them musically can be validating and aid in building self-worth. It can also instill pride in one’s ability to turn their struggles into art.
Discover the Benefits of Music Therapy at Bonfire Behavioral Health
Music therapy can help with several mental health issues. If you’re ready to take the next step in your mental health journey, consider the benefits of music therapy at Bonfire Behavioral Health. Reach out to one of our team members today online or at 603.617.4815 to discuss music therapy health benefits at Bonfire Behavioral Health.