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Stories

Sound Health, Part 1

Music gets you moving and more

Music has been around since ancient times. It is part of every known culture. It can get your foot tapping, lift your mood, and even help you recall a distant memory. Did you know that music can bring other health benefits? Scientists are exploring the different ways music stimulates healthier bodies and minds.

“When you listen to or create music, it affects how you think, feel, move, and more,” says neuroscientist Dr. Robert Finkelstein, who co-leads the music and health initiative of the National Institutes of Health.

“Today, modern technologies are helping researchers learn more about how the brain works, what parts of the brain respond to music, and how music might help ease symptoms of certain diseases and conditions,” he explains.

Here are six ways to add more music to your life

  1. Listen to music during the day, like on your way to work or during exercise.
  2. Sing and dance while you’re doing chores or cooking meals.
  3. Play a musical instrument. Consider taking lessons or joining friends to make music.
  4. Attend concerts, plays, and other community music activities in your area.
  5. Encourage your kids to listen to music, sing, play an instrument, or participate in music programs at school.
  6. Ask your doctor if music therapy is right for you. Consider working with a board-certified music therapist to improve your health.

Stay tuned for Part 2 and Part 3 in this series, with more information about the benefits of music to your health, music’s impact on certain health conditions, and the practice of music therapy.

Article adapted from the National Institutes of Health January 2018 News in Health, available online at newsinhealth.nih.gov.