In the current changing times, an overly stressful lifestyle is increasing the types of stresses and the frequency at which they are exposed to individuals, at an alarming rate. Little surprise that depression, a chronic disorder is increasing. Depression may strike at any age and is more common in the female gender. While some cases are attributed to a host of risk factors including family history; life events and childhood neglect may also contribute to the same.
Conventional treatments for depression belong to three main categories, namely: psychotherapy, drug treatment, and the lesser common electroconvulsive therapy. One of the common treatment methods of depression is pharmaceutical treatments which aim to cure depression symptoms through the use of antidepressants and various other serotonin inhibitors. The truth about this treatment, however, is that it makes little or no difference in successfully reducing the suicide ratio prevalent in the population. A new form of treatment, however, namely, music therapy is now fast gaining popularity owing to its effective results.
Music, a powerful tool, has shown positive results while dealing with patients who suffer from the depression disorder. In addition, music is also found to be effective in patients who are suffering from acute pain. Scientists and researchers are linking this positive effect of music with its physiological connectivity to the mesolimbic system. The same is responsible for provoking positive and pleasurable feelings and experiences in the body.
Music therapy, in essence, is defined as the planned use of music, either in groups or via individual programs for positive therapeutic results. In the field of mental health, music therapy is used based on the primary findings that it enhances the capacity of the brain by increasing the activity level of various signal pathways. The impact is thus, not only felt in the mood but also on the memory of an individual.
The impact of music therapy on depression has so far been positive with no side effects or adverse reactions being reported. In fact, as compared to psychotherapy, music therapy has shown far more promising results than that perceived before.
Music is a powerful means that helps to stimulate positive and pleasurable feelings while also reducing the overall depression levels. A common symptom in a patient who suffers from depression is the feeling of apathy or disinterest which is, in essence, is a lack of the pleasurable stimuli in the brain. What music can do for such individuals is stimulate those specific parts of the brain that are responsible for producing pleasurable responses. In this way, it helps fight depression in the most effective manner.
Depression strikes as a major health challenge in current times. In addition, the use of pharmaceutical medicines, apart from having limited positive results, may also be responsible for certain side effects. Music, on the other hand, is a safe and inexpensive procedure which can be used to enhance the behavioral patterns in individuals that can help fight depression. The need for further research in this field, therefore, is crucial.